Your smartphone is an incredible invention. It can replace a traditional phone, a camera, a calculator, a portable music player and a whole host of other devices. These phones are so popular because of this versatility. It’s a technology that was barely fathomable just a few decades ago, and now everyone has one. 

There’s one place you should never use your phone, though: In the car. As useful as a smartphone is, phones and driving simply do not mix. 

Every year, thousands of people die in distracted driving accidents. It’s true that distraction can take many forms. Parents may be distracted by their children, for instance, or teens may be distracted by their friends. But the smartphone is perhaps the worst offender. 

The reason is the same versatility that you love in your smartphone in the first place. Even if you’re not texting and driving or making a call, your phone can still do quite a lot. You may use it to play all of your music in the car so that you never have to look for a radio station. You may use it as your GPS so that you can get anywhere without a map. If you see something interesting outside the window, you’ll use it as a camera and snap a picture — with the added bonus that you can upload that picture to social media instantly. 

All of these actions put yourself and others at risk. The best thing to do with your phone while you drive is to turn it off. Even if you do, though, other drivers will not. When a distracted driver causes an accident, you may be able to seek compensation for your losses, including medical bills and missed wages.