Distracted driving has certainly received a lot of attention when it comes to dangerous behind- the-wheel behavior. It’s featured in numerous news stories with sad endings, often claiming the life of other victims. Legislators have taken the issue seriously and created a broad range of laws designed to curb the behavior and to catch people who do it.

Despite all this, however, distracted driving is still a leading cause of not just preventable car accidents but also fatalities. A recent analysis in Washington state identified that traffic deaths associated with distracted driving were up as much as ten percent.

One of the reasons why it seems to be so difficult to tackle distracted driving in California and in other states is because most people do the behavior on a regular basis and make the mistake of assuming that just a couple of seconds can’t be that harmful. The truth, however, is that just a few seconds glancing away from the road could mean traveling up to the length of a football field. That’s plenty of time for a serious accident to happen.

In order to prevent distracted driving deaths, it seems that it will take society understanding the financial and emotional cost of these accidents. With so many people maintaining a sense of false confidence about their ability to focus on two things at the same time, the behavior persists. One study recently identified that distracted driving was often linked to drunk driving, too; one of the most common “last texts” sent by those causing fatal accidents was “I’m drunk.”

If you have already been hurt in an accident caused by someone else’s distracted driving, there are many complex legal questions and concerns that must be addressed immediately.