Drivers, especially teenage drivers, are becoming distracted behind the wheel. Distractions come in many forms. Eating or drinking, other passengers, applying make-up, or looking for something can lead you to take your eyes off of the road. Also, devices such as cell phones and iPods distract drivers from paying attention to the road. Some statistics claim that drivers spend more than half of their time focused on things other than driving.
According to cdc.gov, more than 9 people each day in the U.S. are killed and more than 1,060 people are injured in crashes that are reported to involve a distracted driver. 80% of crashes and 65% of near crashes involve some form of driver distractions that reduces driving safety. The leading cause of distracted driving accidents is texting while driving. This has led many states, including PA, to ban texting while driving. In November of 2011, a 17 year old western PA girl was killed in a car crash when her vehicle went over an embankment and slid into a tree. After the crash, police found her phone with a partly typed text message on the screen. Eight hours before the crash The PA state senate passed a bill that banned texting while driving.
It is not illegal to make phone calls while driving in Pennsylvania. However it is illegal to use your cell phone to send or receive texts, e-mails, or any type of messages. If you are caught using your cell phone to send or receive messages the PA Department of Transportation will issue you a fine of at least $50.
Despite this ban, people are breaking the law and continuing to text and drive. According to distraction.gov at any given daylight moment in America 660,000 drivers are using cell phones or manipulating electronic devices. This is why drivers need to know the facts about texting and driving. Five seconds is the average time your eyes are off the road while texting. If you are traveling at 55 mph that’s enough time to cover the length of a football field. Engaging in visual manual subtasks associated with hand-held phones and other portable devices increased the risk of getting into a crash by three times.
More teens die as a result of texting and driving than drunk driving. No one should have to see their loved ones die in a car crash. At Michael J. O’Connor and Associates, we want people to be aware of the dangers of distracted driving. Our law firm has dealt with many cases involving car accidents and we want to give the victims the support they deserve. Call us at 1-800-518-4529 for a free case review today. We are here to fight for you and protect your rights.