The dangers of texting and driving are well known, yet every day motorists step behind the wheel and use their cell phones to talk, text, and even surf the internet. An AT&T survey from 2013 noted that 49% of adults admit to texting while driving and 43% of teens admit to the same habit. The same survey found that 60% of adults did not text while behind the wheel three years ago, this means more and more drivers are taking the risk of texting and driving.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration texting and driving is six times more dangerous than driving under the influence. Distracted driving, including texting while driving, is a dangerous practice and in 2010 approximately 18% of all injury crashes were related to distract driving.
In Ohio the Department of Public Safety recorded more than 290,000 crashes in 2011. Statistics also showed that approximately 3,455 car crashes were caused by a motorist operating the vehicle in a negligent manner.
If you or a loved one has been involved in an injury accident caused by distracted motorist, the victim may be entitled to compensation for property damage, medical bills, lost wages and more.
Texting And Driving Laws
The possibility of being involved in a motor vehicle accident is higher when texting and driving because the type of distraction mobile devices provide. The distraction of cell phones, GPS systems, and other handheld devices is threefold:
- Visual – Drivers take their eyes off the road
- Manual – Drivers may take their hands off the steering wheel
- Cognitive – Drivers fail to pay attention to the road and the other cars around them as they are more focused on sending the text.
In Ohio texting and driving was outlawed in 2011 and for novice drivers all cell phone use, handheld and hand-less, is prohibited. Adults who violate the law will be fined $150 while teens may be fined $150 and have their license suspended for 60 days. Second and third violations may are punishable by fines and an extended period of license suspension.
Currently 39 states have banned texting and driving and many more have begun the legislation process to prohibit the dangerous practice.
Types Of Accidents Texting And Driving May Cause
Distracted driving causes thousands of accidents each year and many are serious auto collisions that injure passengers and drivers.
Some common types of accidents drivers may get into if they text and drive include:
- Head-on Collisions
- Single & Multi-vehicle Accidents
- Rear-end Collisions
The distraction of trying to send or read a text may also cause drivers to break simple driving regulations such as:
- Failing to obey traffic signals
- Improperly changing lanes
Drivers may also get into an accident if their phone or other mobile device falls on the car floor and they attempt to reach it.