Texting and Driving
The Dangers of Texting and Driving in Washington DC
Texting while driving is a significant problem in Washington DC, and across the U.S.A. Every day people are getting into car accidents due to the perceived need to be constantly available and communicating with family and friends. These accidents often result in serious injury or death. Every year 1.4 million auto accidents are caused by drivers talking on a cell phone, and over 200,000 of these are caused by texting. This accounts for nearly 28% of all crashes every year.
The National Safety Council believes that 100 million drivers are using cell phones, and it is clear that many of these use them while driving. On their website, FocusDriven claims: “On average, texting causes drivers to look away from the road for 4.6 seconds. At 55 mph, the vehicle travels the length of an entire football field — including both end zones – while the driver isn’t looking.” With this level of distracted driving, vehicle accidents are inevitable. Worse still, as technology and cell phones become more readily available, the number of drivers distracted by texting, surfing the web, and even watching movies on their cell phone is likely to increase significantly.
At the Abelson Personal Injury Law Firm, our Washington DC car accident lawyer provide free consultations to victims of texting and driving accidents. We help them to better understand D.C. texting-and-driving laws and assist them in making a claim for compensation.
Preventing Texting and Driving Accidents
In order to prevent accidents caused by texting and driving, Washington, DC, and 39 other states have made texting and driving illegal. Additionally, the District of Columbia and 32 other states ban cell phone use by new drivers. Law enforcement agencies are trying to crack down on cell phone use by issuing citations for drivers caught in the act, and many of these carry a hefty fee. In 2011, Washington DC’s metropolitan police department issued over 11,000 tickets to drivers for using their cell phone while operating a motor vehicle. This is a 24% increase over previous years.
Other states, New Jersey for example, are also taking a more proactive approach and enforcing stricter penalties in an attempt to stop distracted driving. In New Jersey, a law was passed allowing for full prosecution of drivers who cause an accident while using a cell phone. They could go to prison and be fined up to $150,000 – punishments similar to that of a DUI offense.
People in metropolitan areas are more likely to get into auto accidents, according to research done by Allstate. With Washington, D.C., having some of the worst traffic in the country, it is important to make driving conditions better by holding drivers accountable for staying focused on the road. In Allstate’s 2010 report on U.S. driving conditions, Washington DC, was listed as the worst place to drive in the entire country. The crash rate in Washington DC, is 95.5% higher than the national average, with only 5.1 years passing between accidents for most drivers.
Our Washington DC, auto accident lawyer can assist you in determining the best method for moving forward with your case. To learn more about your legal rights or about how our Washington car accident lawyer can help you get the maximum compensation you deserve, get in touch with The Abelson Personal Injury Law Firm, today. Please contact us online for a free consultation.