Distracted driving has become a well-known social concern, with warnings popping up everywhere from primetime television shows to during commercials. Even companies that advertise on the radio may waste a few precious seconds of the airtime they paid for to advise people to pull over before they send a text for a promotional opportunity.

You may find yourself wondering whether distracted driving is really such a serious concern or if efforts to warn people about its dangers should go to far more serious offenses like drunk driving. The actual statistics about the prevalence of distracted driving may shock you.

Distracted driving causes thousands of deaths and injuries each year

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), distracted driving claims the lives of nine people across the country every day. Another thousand people each day will suffer injuries across the broad range. While some of those people may only have minor scrapes and bruises, others may suffer spinal cord injuries, closed head injuries or severely broken bones that leave them in pain and struggling to take care of themselves.

Although there is currently no federal statute prohibiting distracted driving in passenger vehicles, there are state and municipal rules against it, as well as a federal rule against distracted driving while in control of a commercial vehicle.

Avoiding distractions yourself while driving can help you stay safer. If you get hurt in a crash caused by a distracted driver, you may have the option of pursuing a personal injury claim against them for the impact of their decision on your life.