Widely available statistics indicate that there is no safe way to text while driving. Nevertheless, many people believe they will not get in an accident and continue to engage in this dangerous behavior. According to a United States Government study, the number of people killed in distraction-affected crashes decreased slightly from 3,360 in 2011 to 3,328 in 2012. However, an estimated 421,000 people were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving a distracted driver. This is a staggering number that is far too high. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident where you believe the driver was sending text messages while driving, an experienced New York auto accident attorney can answer any questions or concerns you may have regarding your case.
Why is Texting and Driving So Dangerous?
Simply stated, distracted driving diverts the driver’s attention away from the primary objective of operating the vehicle in a manner that is safe to him or her and other motorists and pedestrians. All such distractions are very dangerous, and pose risks to the safety of motorists, pedestrians, and bystanders in the vicinity of the texting driver.
Although all forms of distracted driving are inherently dangerous, text messaging is especially so because engaging in this practice requires special cognitive attention and manual dexterity that diverts the driver’s attention away from the road and toward his or her phone. The United States Government study discussed above found that engaging in manual tasks such as texting while driving increases the risk of involvement in a crash by a full three times. Further, a quarter of teenage drivers responded to an anonymous survey that they respond to a text at least once every time they drive. Clearly the dangers of texting while driving are ever present on New York’s busy roads.
Texting While Driving is Also Against the Law
New York has a state law prohibiting the use of short messaging services while operating a motor vehicle. In fact, almost 55,000 motorists were cited for texting violations in the year 2013. While it is not illegal to use a cell phone while driving, it can certainly be a factor when taking into account fault and causation in a civil lawsuit for personal injury and monetary damages. Because the issues in auto accident cases are often complicated and involve specific sets of facts, we highly recommend you contact an experienced attorney to evaluate your case if you were injured in an auto accident and believe the other driver was using a mobile phone at the time of the crash.
Taking Action with a New York Auto Accident Attorney
Contact the Law Offices of Jeffrey K. Kestenbaum immediately if you or a loved one was involved in an auto accident where you believe the driver was texting while driving. Depending on the facts of your case, you and your family may be entitled to monetary damages to recover for your loss. Additionally, if you were involved in an accident we can obtain cellular records to determine whether the driver of the other vehicle was using a cellular phone to text at the time the accident occurred. For a free consultation with a skilled New York accident attorney, call (718) 237-5586.