People across Georgia have been watching the popular television series “Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey,” which is hosted by well-known astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson. On the show, Tyson takes a simplistic, visual approach in an effort to explain extremely complex and advanced scientific theories to viewers.

However, his explanation of what happened in an April 2012 car accident didn’t exactly require scientific terms and advanced equations. According to his statements after the accident, Tyson says he zoned out and was not paying attention when he drifted out his lane and into the car next to his before crashing into a second vehicle. The accident may serve as a strong reminder that distracted driving can be extremely dangerous and can affect any person on the road.

Reports on the accident suggest that Tyson was so distracted by his own thoughts behind the wheel that even the impact of the collision with the first vehicle did not snap him out of his daze. It wasn’t until his side mirror was hit that he realized what was happening and tried to brake. By that time, however, a crash was inevitable and he hit the second car, injuring the driver.

The injured man has filed a lawsuit seeking $5 million in damages. He says that Tyson was negligent behind the wheel and should be held accountable. The driver says that Tyson was distracted and speeding at the time of the accident, which Tyson denies. The case is set to go to trial in the near future, but it is also possible that the two sides will reach an agreement before that time.

Motor vehicle accidents can be the result of a complex chain of events, or they can happen simply because a person stopped paying attention. No matter what factors played a role in an accident, if they involved negligence or reckless behaviors, it is possible for victims to pursue compensation from the appropriate parties.

Source: International Business Times, “Neil deGrasse Tyson Faces $5 Million Negligence Lawsuit In NYC Crash: ‘I Kind Of Zoned Out,’ ‘Cosmos’ Host Says,” Howard Koplowitz, April 4, 2014