Mobile devices have become killers in the last decade. What would it take to reduce death by reducing distraction?
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that 3,477 people were killed by distracted driving in 2015.That does not count the people who were paralyzed, disabled, or laid off work for months trying to recover. Under the control of someone with their eyes on their Smartphone, or their in-console infotainment screen, a car or at truck is a weapon.
In April, 2017, Governor Cuomo announced new measures to reduce death and injury caused by distractions like texting.Data shows tickets for texting in New York State increased 918 percent between 2011 and 2016.Clearly, there is a problem.
April is national Distracted Driving Month.This campaign helps publicize initiatives across the country to make motorists aware of the danger of driving when attention is elsewhere—whether on your phone, dashboard screen, or in conversation with a passenger.
If you are injured, or a loved one is killed by a distracted driver—what happens next?Who is liable for the heartbreak caused by a distracted motorist?
Study clarifies in-car infotainment systems increase distracted driving
In addition to cell phones, in-dash infotainment and information systems play a big part in distracting drivers from the task at hand—and from the road in front of them.
When in-dash information systems were new, automobile manufacturers claimed that hands-free devices were safer.We now know they are not.Despite claims otherwise, the human brain is actually not good at true multi-tasking.
The brain cannot pay equal attention across the board.If you are speaking with someone hands-free from any device in your vehicle, you are driving distracted and are likely a menace to drivers, pedestrians, and bicyclists with the misfortune to cross your path.
A study from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found, “New vehicle infotainment systems take drivers’ eyes and attention off the road and hands off the wheel for potentially dangerous periods of time.”
For individuals who are injured, or families who lose a loved one because of a distracted driver, proving the negligence of the driver can provide compensation to help heal—or move forward after tragedy.
Several legal actions have been filed against manufacturers like Apple on the premise that the company could have added features to stop drivers from using devices while driving.So far, those suits have not been successful in convincing the judiciary that the company is responsible for the actions of the driver of the vehicle.
That said, NHTSA continues to rollout voluntary guidelines that encourage manufacturers to reduce the driving distraction caused by in-dash systems and mobile devices like cell phones.
When you answer or make just one call or text, you put yourself and others at risk.If you are injured by a negligent driver who just had to make the call—get good legal advice.
Dedicated legal representation on distracted driving cases in New York City
With a successful track record obtaining compensation for our injured clients, Robinson & Yablon, P.C. is focused on personal injury matters in New York City and surrounding boroughs.When you are injured, we can help. Contact us or call (646) 832-2853 today.