Posted by Jim Yeargan in Jim's Blog on May 11, 2018
In past decades, driver distractions were limited to their passengers, radios, and objects on the road. Now, thanks to the advancement of smartphones, nearly all adults have access to a world of information that drastically increases the chances of them taking their eyes off of the road for a crucial second.
Georgia in particular has seen an increase in accidents attributed to smartphone distraction that dwarfs the national average and contributes to the nationwide rise in driver distraction related fatalities. For those who are not fully aware of the dangers of driving while distracted, these five texting while driving facts should open your eyes.
Increases the Number of Accidents Annually
Each year over one million motor vehicle accidents involving cell phones occur. Not using a cell phone in any capacity while driving could decrease motor vehicle accidents throughout the United States by as much as 64%.
Even with increased awareness regarding the danger of cell phone usage, these accident numbers continue to rise. Currently, Georgia has the fifth highest number of cell phone related accidents in the United States.
Leads to More Motor Vehicle Related Deaths
While some of the accidents are minor, others lead to serious injury or death. Over 3,400 people die each year in accidents that were attributed to distracted driving. Approximately 391,000 are seriously injured in a distracted driving accident.
Illegal in Most States
Understanding the danger of distracted driving and realizing that one of the primary actions people who are involved in accidents are doing is texting, the act is illegal in most states. Currently the District of Columbia and 43 other states prohibit drivers from texting while driving. Georgia is one of those 43 states with laws against texting while driving.
Comes with a Fine
In the past, if a police officer believed that you were texting while driving, he or she could issue a citation or warning. Now, the officer is able to issue a ticket that comes with a fine. For your first offense you will have to pay $50.00, and for your second offense the fine is increased to $100.00.
Some are already supporting an increase in these fines to further deter people from texting while behind the wheel of a motor vehicle.
No Age Limits
When states started regulating texting while behind the wheel, teenage drivers were the primary targets for lawmakers. While it is true that teenage drivers who are texting are a danger to everyone on the road, adults have also been involved in accidents because they were texting instead of paying attention to the road.
Now people of all ages can be cited for driving while handling a cell phone.
If you or someone you know has received a citation for driving while texting consulting an attorney is always a good idea. The team at Yeargan , Barber & Kert is here to provide you with the criminal defense attorney that you need. Contact our office today to schedule an initial consultation so that we can begin discussing your case.