Federal Report Calls for a Ban on Cell Phones While Driving
Federal safety inspectors looking into the dangers of distracted driving have concluded all cellphone use behind the wheel is unacceptably dangerous and have urged all states to impose total bans.
The report by the five-member National Transportation Safety Board follows a recent series of fatal crashes — including one in which a teenager sent or received 11 text messages in the same number of minutes before an accident. The recommendation would even apply to hands free devices, the Wall Street Journal reported.
“States aren’t ready to support a total ban yet, but this may start the discussion,” Jonathan Adkins, a spokesman for the Governors Highway Safety Association, told the Wall Street Journal.
“The immediate impetus for the recommendation of state bans was a deadly highway pileup near Gray Summit, Mo., last year in which a 19-year-old pickup driver sent and received 11 texts in 11 minutes just before the accident,” the Wall Street Journal reported.
Distracted driving is also an escalating problem in Virginia (VA). A recent five year study released in 2011 by the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles found distracted driving deaths increased by 22 percent at a time when overall road deaths fell by a similar magnitude.
A recent study by AAA and Seventeen magazine found teens are particularly at risk of distracted driving with 86 percent admitting to taking their eye off the wheel to text, use a cellphone or another device.
Teens are about four times more likely to be involved in a fatal crash than adults. Our Norfolk, VA personal injury lawyers recently reported on the death of a 17-year-old from Virginia Beach in a car crash in Charles City County. The teen was passenger and alcohol was a factor, police said.
Distracted driving is a significant factor in teen deaths. Texting is banned in Virginia and it is unlawful for drivers under the age of 18 to use a cell phone.
The Norfolk based personal injury law firm, Cooper Hurley, handles automobile, truck, and motorcycle injuries. John Cooper and Jim Hurley have over 40 years of combined experience in handling auto injury accident claims. Attorney John Cooper has been named to Virginia “Super Lawyers” since 2010. Cooper Hurley represents people hurt in accidents in Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Chesapeake, Hampton, Newport News and throughout VA, and always put the best interests of the our clients first.. The firm is recognized by other lawyers as “AV” by Martindale-Hubbell, a national attorney rating service, for our top level of legal skill and highest ethical standards. If you need help or advice about a serious injury, please call us ( 757) 455 -0077.