One of the first things we learn as new drivers is to always pay attention to the road. How many of us can recall our parents or teachers telling us to keep our eyes on the road at all times? Distractions like the radio and conversations in the car have always been a distraction but in the new age of technology, there is even more to distract drivers. Cell phones and text messages in particular have become a dangerous problem on the roadway.
Many states, California included, have instituted various laws to prohibit texting and driving and to make drivers more aware of the dangers involved. The first offense is usually around $20 plus court costs and fees. Subsequent offenses are higher and repeat offenders can face some jail time. New bills are constantly up for debate on raising the penalties even higher in California.
Types of Distracted Driving
Distracted driving is not only the use of a cell phone while driving. Drivers have been fined for distracted driving while putting on makeup, looking out of the side windows, reaching for objects while driving and fiddling with the radio. Use of a tablet while driving is another new issue. Many of the new model cars have so many features and electronics built right into the dash drivers can become distracted.
Research & Statistics
A study published by Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) showed that drivers make approximately 200 decisions per mile driving. Making the wrong decision at the wrong time can mean death or serious, debilitating injury. Statistics like these prove drivers must give 100% of their attention to the road at all times to ensure their own safety and that of their passengers and others on the road. A 2006 report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration stated that a lack of full attention from drivers was a key factor in the majority of the country’s auto accidents. Nearly 80% of accidents and 65% of near misses were attributed to driver inattention.
California Law & Distracted Driving
California restricts drivers from using a hand held device of any kind while driving. While many believe this law is in place for teens, the problem goes far beyond their generation. Adults of all generation’s text while driving, which studies have proven to be up to six times more dangerous than drinking and driving. The Network of Employers for Traffic Safety (NETS) study showed the cause of distracted driving for adults is often hot coffee spills and drivers dropping things in the car floorboards.
Distracted Driving Prevention
Accidents with a distracted driver can be deadly. Studies also point to heated arguments in the car contributing to distracted driving. Anything that takes the drivers attention from the road. Recent years have seen a great improvement in this issue. The many public service announcements and increasingly severe penalties seem to be working. New car manufacturers are also designing features right into the cars that can help. Several have designed software that disables cell phones while the driver is operating the vehicle. Most work by blocking the text signals while the phone is in the car. Others, like OrigoSafe, keep the car from starting unless the phone is plugged into the device.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a accident due to a distracted driver you will need a lawyer with experience. Call Moseley Collins at (916) 444-4444 for a free consultation.
Moseley Collins is a personal injury attorney serving those badly hurt throughout California. There is absolutely NO FEE to discuss your case and there is absolutely no fee unless we win and get you the money you are entitled to. We are on your side and know what to do to get you compensation and justice.
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Sacramento, CA 95814
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