It is Saturday night and you are cruising down a street looking for a bar where you are to meet some friends. You have been texting one of them about a person there you have had a thing for when all of a sudden you see cop lights on in your rearview mirror and you are getting pulled over. Stopping your vehicle you begin searching for your license, registration, and insurance card, reminding yourself what a good choice you made at the bar you just left not to have a drink just yet. When the office approaches he asks not to give you a sobriety test, but wants to see your cell phone. On it, he finds a time-stamped log of your chat while you drove. Now you need a drink.
Texting While Driving Stats
The truth is, a driver who is also texting is 23 times more likely to get into a car crash than someone who is simply driving with no distractions. According to a Carnegie Mellon study, using a cell device reduces attention paid to driving by 37%. Here’s a little exercise to demonstrate how dangerous this is: right where you are, close your eyes for two consecutive seconds, then open them for three. Do this again a couple of times. Then ask yourself if you could drive a car safely like that. If you think you can then you probably should not be driving at all.
Here is another way of looking at what was just said above: A study by VTTI concluded that a person responding to a text takes 4.3 seconds of continual eye time away from the road. That is the equivalent of closing your eyes for 100 yards while driving at 55 miles an hour. Does this sound safe? Is that text message really worth it?
Texting While Driving Banned
In 2010 over 5,474 people were killed due to distracted driving, and a Pew report says that over 40% of teens polled said a peer driver they had been in a car with putting them in dangerous situations while texting or using their cell. As a result, many states have taken action to put laws on the books that prohibit most use of cell phones while driving. Public awareness campaigns have coincide to get the message out. Currently, 32 states and DC prohibit novice drivers from using cell phones at all while driving and 44 states plus DC ban texting while driving for novice drivers. 39 of those ban texting while driving for all drivers.
If Injured by a Person Texting and Driving
The discussion above has been primarily aimed at the driver. Now we turn our attention to those injured in a car crash due to the negligence of a driver who had been texting or using their cell phones that led to the auto wreck.
If you have been injured in a car wreck due to no fault of your own, then you will have recourse to bring forth a lawsuit that will help you pay for medical expenses, lost wages, damages, and anything else allowable by the laws of the state where the accident took place. Losing life, opportunities, and sustaining permanent injuries all because someone was driving distracted while texting is unacceptable. Pursuing a lawsuit against them is not revenge, but justice, and your legal right.
However, it can be a tricky legal road to travel, so you will need an experienced, successful personal injury attorney on your side who has successfully won cases on behalf of car injury crash victims. The legal team at Elrod Pope Law Firm emphatically suggest that you do not talk to the negligent party’s insurance company until you have spoken with a personal injury attorney because they will want to trip you up and settle for much less than what is rightly yours.
Do not text while driving so you don’t end up hurting someone and getting sued. If you have been hurt by a texting driver, then by all means hire an attorney to guard your rights.
The only real solution to stop distracted driving accidents is to eliminate the distraction. Nationwide, 43 states have passed laws to prohibit drivers from texting. The Federal Government also took several important steps to address potential distracted driving problems but it’s yet to be seen if this will solve the problem.