Auto Accidents and Driving While Eating By Matt Quick on January 17, 2020

A man eating a hamburger while drivingAccording to the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA), districted driving led to the deaths of 3,166 in 2017. There were also countless injury accidents and minor collisions that were the result of a distracted driver. We tend to think of collisions caused by texting or cellphone use behind the wheel, but actions as common as eating while driving can lead to crashes. It may be worthwhile speaking with a car accident attorney about your collision.

Attorneys Elizabeth M. Quick and Matthew Quick have helped many injured motorists and pedestrians in the Bellevue, WA area hold negligent drivers accountable for distracted driving. Let’s discuss the hazards of eating while driving and if you have a case.

Why People Eat While Behind the Wheel

Many of us are in a rush every day. Multitasking and finding life hacks to save time are crucial for many people. Commuters may have breakfast on the way to work. In fact, many people have to eat on the run after work because they had to stay late and have plans in the evening that don’t involve dinner.

While common, eating while driving is not always advisable.

The Dangers of Eating While Driving

Some of the typical dangers of eating while driving include:

  • Removing one or both hands from the wheel
  • Reduced grip on the wheel due to holding a food item
  • Taking a driver’s eyes away from the road
  • Diverting the driver’s overall attention from the task of driving
  • Reaching for food or beverages that are not conveniently located
  • Loss of vehicle control from spilling beverages or dropping food items

There are other hazards to keep in mind, but the above covers many of the collision cases our Bellevue law firm has reviewed.

What You Should Do If You Have to Eat While Driving

If you are in a situation where you have to eat while driving, consider the following tips to make it safer:

  • Make sure bags or containers are open before your vehicle is in motion
  • Eat snack foods that can easily be eaten with one hand, such as nuts, chips, or pretzels
  • Have any snack foods readily accessible so you don’t divert your attention or have to reach for something that’s out of the way
  • Have beverages in vehicle cup holders within reach, and with caps unscrewed
  • Only eat your snack or sip from your beverage when at a complete stop

Are People Who Eat Behind the Wheel Liable for Collisions?

That depends.

There are many instances in which a collision is simply a freak occurrence and no one was at fault. However, sometimes distracted driving is so egregious that a motorist who was eating while driving may be held liable for causing property damage, injuries, and even fatalities.

How Our Lawyers Can Help

If you or a loved one has been struck by a distracted driver, our attorneys can go over the evidence in your case. We can negotiate a fair settlement that accounts for the damage and injuries related to the crash. If a settlement cannot be reached, we will take your case all the way to trial if need be.

Contact Quick Law Group, PLLC

If you would like to learn more about your legal options following a series auto collision, be sure to contact our team of auto accident attorneys. You can reach our Bellevue law office by phone at (425) 576-8150.

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