On March 3, an SUV drove over a curb and directly into the front of a New Port Richey shopping center housing the Pet Starr Salon grooming salon. No one was injured in the early-morning wreck, but the vehicle caused damage to both the exterior and interior of the grooming shop. And as it turns out, the accident was caused by a dog.
The driver, a 69-year-old-woman, was attempting to park in front of the business when her shih tzu jumped down into the foot well of her Jeep. The woman attempted to maintain control of the vehicle while securing her dog, but instead she hit the gas and sent her vehicle flying through the front of the shopping center. The incident shows that pets in cars can be added to the long list of distractions affecting drivers.
Distracted driving caused by more than just cellphones
It is widely known that being on a cellphone while driving is distracting and raises the likelihood of being involved in an accident. Cellphones, however, are not the only things that can distract drivers. Anything that takes your eyes or your mind off the road, even for a second, can create a dangerous situation. Other sources of distraction for drivers include:
- Radio dials
- GPS devices
This particular wreck was caused when a woman was distracted by a dog, an entirely avoidable situation. There are safer ways to travel with a pet. If you have a cat or dog, you may want to consider a pet barrier or a restraint harness. Confining your dog to a crate or your cat to a carrier may also be an option, but be sure that your vehicle has proper tie-downs or some other way to secure the crate or carrier in place to keep both you and your pet safe during travel.
If you have been hurt in an accident caused by a distracted driver, you may be entitled to recover compensation. Speak with the experienced Manatee County car accident lawyers at the firm of Shapiro, Goldman, Babboni & Walsh.