According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, approximately 3,000 fatal accidents last year were linked to distracted driving. Safety experts speculate that texting while driving delays driver reaction times as much as having a blood alcohol content of .08, the legally allowable limit. For this reason, the United States Department of Transportation is currently endorsing a nationwide ban on using all forms of electronic communication while behind the wheel of a motor vehicle in motion, a problem department representatives equate to drunken driving a few decades back. According to a Department of Transportation spokesperson, giving law enforcement officials the authority to issue citations to drivers using portable communication devices while operating a motor vehicle will encourage drivers to adopt safer driving practices behind the wheel. Representatives from the National Motorists Association disagree, however, stating that current laws against distracted driving are sufficient, and any laws specifically prohibiting drivers from using electronic communications devices while operating an automobile are unnecessary. An advertising campaign encouraging drivers to resist the urge to engage in all forms of distracting behavior would be a more effective use of resources, according to the National Motorists Association.
As a car accident attorney in Oakland, I am hopeful that drivers will adopt safer practices behind the wheel in order to reduce the number of collisions that occur on American roads. If you have been injured in an accident linked to a distracted driver, please consider contacting an Oakland personal injury lawyer.