There is a very real consequence of so many people being connected through the internet and digital devices. That consequence is addiction.
You probably know at least one person who can't be away from their phone at any time. They check it while driving, while parked, while eating dinner and at every moment they can. This addiction isn't healthy, and it puts them at risk of being involved in or causing a crash.
How common is smartphone addiction?
Smartphone addiction is growing more common in the world today. Why? People develop virtual relationships. You text friends and family. You work online and through email. You connect to people you know on social media. In all, people's lives are online.
The trouble with this is that it makes people compulsive. You'll compulsively check your emails, text messages and social media pages. Some people begin to crave the interaction and attention that comes from being connected 24/7.
Smartphone addiction significantly impacts a person's life, making it harder for them to think deeply or concentrate. It disturbs their sleep and distracts them when they should be focused on other things. In combination, sleep disturbances and distractions are highly likely to make a driver a danger to themselves and others.
Smartphone addiction is more than a single distraction
Smartphone addiction causes issues other than just taking your eyes off of the road. This form of addiction also makes you take your hands off of the wheel and your mind off of what you're doing while you respond to texts, read emails or perform other actions.
While people often believe that they can do more than one thing at once, the reality is that driving requires all of your attention. Failing to give it the attention it requires will result in near-miss accidents or crashes.
Here's an example. If you're driving and get a text message, you might look away. Even if you look up every second or two to check the road, your mind isn't really focused. You may not notice the vehicle to the right pulling out in front of you or the traffic light ahead turning red. In a matter of seconds, you can go from happily reviewing an email to being badly hurt in a traffic collision.
Victims of injuries caused by those addicted to smartphones have the right to sue or pursue compensation through other means in New York. Phones cannot take precedence over a person's life.