The increased use of smartphones among drivers creates dangerous traveling conditions that sometimes lead to tragic car accidents and life-altering injuries. According to the CDC, approximately nine people in the U.S. lose their lives each day in motor vehicle accidents caused by distracted driving.
Distracted driving is anything that takes a driver’s eyes away from the road, hands away from the wheel, or mind away from the task of driving. And often the use of smartphones to send texts or engage in social media is distracting drivers.
Smartphone Addictions and Distracted Driving Fatalities
Today, smartphones are used for a vast range of applications from work to recreation. Many individuals use their smartphones for GPS navigation while driving, but many also dangerously choose to use them for work, texting, social media, games, or other various apps.
The growth of smartphone use means road risks will continue to increase. Indeed, the massive improvements in smartphone technology, clever design of apps and the phones themselves, and increasing use of the internet for information and communication are impacting younger drivers the most.
Individuals under 50 years old tend to receive a higher percentage of their daily news from social networks or the internet compared to older individuals. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration also found that cell phone use while driving is highest among teens and young adults from 16 to 24 years old. Taken together, this research reveals the potentially grave dangers younger drivers who lack extensive driving experience pose. They are far more likely to be distracted by their smartphones.
National campaigns are attempting to raise awareness about the legal consequences of cell phone usage while driving among youths and adults alike. According to the Governors Highway Safety Association, 15 states prohibit all drivers from using hand-held cell phones while driving, 47 states prohibit all drivers from texting while driving, and some states have policies targeting novice drivers in particular.
On the national level, the government has also increased marketing campaign efforts to discourage cell phone use while driving and establish safer social norms around smartphone use while driving. However, despite existing laws, there is a concern that the dangers of smartphone use while driving may actually be underestimated.
Smartphone Distractions and Missouri Law
In Missouri, drivers under 21 years old and all commercial drivers are banned from texting while driving. State statutes also make it an infraction to use a hand-held electronic device, such as a smartphone or cell phone, to read or send electronic messages. This doesn’t always mean that young drivers are following the law, and resisting the temptation of buzzing apps and social media distractions when driving is proving difficult for many younger drivers.
However, all distracted drivers, experienced or novice, have the potential to cause catastrophic injuries or property damage from their negligent behavior.
Why You Need an Attorney After a Crash Caused by a Distracted Driver
While you or a loved one are in recovery from an accident caused by a distracted driver, your attorney will be able to begin the research and evidence-gathering required for a strong personal injury claim.
At Sansone & Lauber, we understand what it takes to see a case through to the end of a trial. This means that our lawyers, based in St. Louis, know what it takes to fight for you in court or at the negotiating table to obtain compensation for your lost wages, pain and suffering, mental and emotional anguish, medical expenses, and potentially even punitive damages.
Hiring an attorney after an accident is important in order to determine liability and help you secure the compensation you deserve. An attorney can look into potential smartphone use by a driver and explain the available legal options and strategies while guiding you through the claims process.
Our attorneys are skilled at negotiating settlements to and prioritize working honestly and fairly in order to minimize your litigation expenses. We value communicating with our clients promptly and frequently, and will never leave you in the dark about the status of your claims.
Contact Us Now for Legal Help After a Distracted Driving Accident
If you or your loved one has been injured in an accident caused by a distracted driver, contact us by phone or online now for a free consultation. We understand that recovering from an accident can be a challenging period.
Our distracted driving lawyers believe in providing compassionate and effective advocacy throughout your case. You only pay if we are successful in securing your recovery, whether through settlement or a trial verdict. We will support your case goals at every step of the way.