Distracted Driving Accident Lawyers
Most drivers know what it’s like to have screaming kids in the backseat, the radio playing, and the persistent ring of a cell phone just out of reach. Unfortunately, our roads are a shared space, and every car is an opportunity for countless distractions. According to Distraction.gov, 3,179 people were killed, and 431,000 were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers in 2014. Crashes due to texting, using a cell phone, eating and drinking, adjusting a radio, and other distractions while driving are all avoidable. According to a recent published article, driving while distracted on the phone is equivalent to driving with a blood alcohol at or exceeding the .08 legal limit.
If you’ve been injured as a result of a distracted driver, or know someone who has been injured or killed as a result of a distracted driver, contact Meshbesher & Spence for a free consultation with one of our personal injury attorneys. We will help you recover damages for your injuries.
Free Consultation 1-888-728-9866
Cases are stronger when an attorney is involved early.
Speak to any attorney now. No Recovery. No Fees
Speak with a distracted driving lawyer attorney at Meshbesher & Spence and let us help you receive compensation for:
- Lost wages, future earnings and earning capacity
- Past, present and future medical bills
- Pain, suffering and emotional distress
- Permanent injury and disability
- Disfigurement and scarring
- Wrongful death and funeral expenses
- Property damage and car rental
- Replacement services
- And other general damages
The lawyer you choose make a difference®
The lawyers at Meshbesher & Spence are here to help. We have the experience and knowledge to make sure that you are fairly compensated. We are prepared to work diligently to make sure you are appropriately compensated for your medical expenses and physical and emotional suffering.
As the victim of a vehicle crash, you may face lost wages, unmanageable medical bills, repair bills, out of pocket expenses, and a mountain of complicated insurance claims. The insurance companies have experienced attorneys looking out for their interests. We believe you should have the very best attorneys looking out for you. Meshbesher & Spence has more than 50 years of experience of representing injured individuals and families and we will fight to get the compensation you deserve.
You don’t pay anything unless we make a recovery for you
When you hire Meshbesher & Spence, you will not be asked to pay any attorney fees or out of pocket expenses until you receive compensation for your injuries. In the event that you do not recover compensation for your injuries, you will not be asked to pay anything. This means that you have no reason not to hire the experienced law firm of Meshbesher & Spence. It is important to act immediately to protect your rights. Call Meshbesher & Spence to speak with a lawyer to discuss your potential vehicle accident claim. You will receive a free consultation, and our personal injury lawyers are available to visit you in the hospital, at home, at one of our five office locations, or any place that is most convenient for you.
Much like a breathalyzer test, refusal to submit to a Textalyzer could come with penalties such as license suspension, if the law passes.
But before you begin imagining a scenario in which police are reading your texts and e-mails, drivers should know that the Textalyzer doesn’t grant police access to your personal information—it just allows them know whether or not you were using your phone while driving and how i.e. texting, checking e-mail, etc. Still, the issue of privacy is one of the issues that stands in the way of the Textalyzer being passed into law.
Rising concern over distracted driving
The Textalyzer is just one idea proposed for combating distracted driving as concern mounts following recent data that shows a rise in driver fatalities and a study that reveals an increase in phone use while driving. Preliminary findings from the National Safety Council (NSC) shows an 8% increase in motor vehicle deaths from 2014 to 2015—the largest year-over-year percent increase in 50 years. According to the council, with an estimated 38,300 people killed and 4.4 million seriously injured on U.S. roads, 2015 was likely the deadliest driving year since 2008.
Although a better economy and lower unemployment rate were cited as some of the reasons for the decline in safety, distracted driving, and particularly cell phone use while driving, is getting worse despite attempts to crack down on the dangerous behavior.
According to new research from AT&T—as part of their “It Can’t Wait” campaign against distracted driving—cell phone use while driving has grown from talking and texting to checking social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter, web surfing, taking selfies, and, perhaps the most alarming, video chatting.
Minnesota distracted driving laws
Distracted driving plays a role in a minimum of 70 deaths and 350 serious injuries (one in four crashes) per year in Minnesota, according to the Office of Traffic Safety (OTS). So whether the Textalyzer becomes a reality or not, it’s high time everyone start to take their responsibility as a driver more seriously.
And if doing it for your own safety isn’t enough, just consider the penalty: A violation of Minnesota’s anti-texting law can come with a fine of up to $300, for example. For Minnesotans needing a refresher, here are our distracted driving laws straight from OTS: It is illegal for drivers of all ages to compose, read, or send electronic messages or access the Internet on a wireless device when the vehicle is in motion or part of traffic. This includes being stopped in traffic or at a light. (The law does not apply to devices that are permanently affixed to the vehicle or global positioning or navigation systems.) It is illegal for drivers under age 18 to use a cell phone, whether hand-held or hands-free—except to call 911 in an emergency. Cell phone use is totally banned for school bus drivers.
Distracted drivers can be ticketed for reckless or careless driving when their actions demonstrate a disregard for the safety or rights of others. If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, it is very important to see a doctor immediately to document your injuries in a medical record. Then, contact Meshbesher & Spence for a consultation with our personal injury attorneys—our attorneys are available to visit you in the hospital or in your home as well as in our offices. Our compassionate lawyers will help you determine if you will be able to recover damages for your injuries.
Learn more about the danger of distracted driving:
How to say “no” to distracted driving. Techniques for staying off your phone while driving. The danger of selfies.
In these cases, the squad car itself has come under fire as one possible culprit for the distraction. Sitting amidst and using a computer, radio, and cell phone while driving and scanning the roads for criminal behavior, it’s easy to see how an officer can become distracted. In fact, in the Kare 11 article, one Brooklyn Park Deputy Police Chief, Mark Bruley, goes as far as to refer to the squad car as a “mobile office.”
Although the number of crashes caused by distracted police officers is relatively low, especially considering they typically drive thousands of miles more than the average person, the increasing number gadgets is still a concern, prompting officials to search for solutions such as voice-activated controls and automatic license plate readers.
But whereas cops don’t have a lot of choice about whether or not to use the gadgets that help them do their job, civilian drivers do. And with distracted driving listed as a contributing factor in over 17,000 crashes in Minnesota each year, it’s a choice that could save your life.
Types of distracted driving
The first step in being able to say “no” to distracted driving is learning its causes.
The government’s official site for distracted driving, distraction.gov, classifies distracted driving by three categories: manual (taking your hands off the wheel), visual (taking your eyes off the road), and cognitive (taking your mind off driving). The following list of distractions, fall into one or more of these categories.
Using a cell phone or smartphone (includes texting, talking, dialing, surfing the internet, and taking selfies). Configuring other devices that are part of the car (including GPS, heater/AC, radio or other music player, and rearview mirrors). Talking to passengers. (This is especially distracting for teenagers.) Applying makeup/grooming. Eating and drinking. Listening to loud music. Smoking (includes lighting up, looking for cigarettes or matches, using the ashtray). Reading (books, magazines or maps). Generally lost in thought. Unsecured pets that are traveling in the car.
Saying “NO” to distracted driving
New “good” habits can be hard to establish, and the temptation of using your phone can be hard to resist, particularly for teens. That’s why education is the best method for creating change and convincing drivers of all ages to commit to safe, distraction-free driving. Knowing just how dangerous it is, can make the decision to say “no” an easy one.
If you’re a parent of a young driver, share the following statistics with your teen so they have a clear picture of the reality of distracted driving. Don’t hesitate to set and enforce rules about cell phone use, loud music, and passenger interaction while they’re driving. Don’t forget, your teen learns what is okay from observing your behavior – so set a good example. The more we communicate with each other and spread the word about distracted driver the more drivers we can influence.
Each day in the United States, more than 9 people are killed and more than 1,153 people are injured in crashes that are reported to involve a distracted driver, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Drivers in their 20s make up 27 percent of the distracted drivers in fatal crashes according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA). Engaging in visual-manual subtasks (such as reaching for a phone, dialing and texting) associated with the use of hand-held phones and other portable devices increased the risk of getting into a crash by three times (VTTI). Five seconds is the average time your eyes are off the road while texting. When traveling at 55mph, that’s enough time to cover the length of a football field blindfolded, according to the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI).
See distraction.gov for additional stats on the reality of distracted driving.
New software to help combat distracted driving
In addition, new software is being created to help eliminate the temptation of taking a call or texting while driving. For example, Aegis Mobility has created software that can be installed onto a teen’s smartphone or other handheld device that puts the device in safe mode when a speed of about ten mph is reached, preventing the user from talking, texting, etc. Your kid might not love you for it, but it may save their life or the life of another driver.
The cost of the software is typically $4 per month, but Iowa is the first state to make the software free for new teen drivers up to 17 years old. Other states are likely to soon follow suit.
If you or a loved one has been injured or killed by a distracted driver, it is very important to see a doctor immediately to document your injuries in a medical record. Then, contact Meshbesher & Spence for a consultation with our personal injury attorneys. Our attorneys are available to visit you in the hospital or in your home as well as in our offices and will help you determine if you will be able to recover damages for your injuries.
Pledge to drive phone-free. Download here Are hands-free devices safer? Find out here. Techniques for staying off your phone while driving. Learn about the danger of selfies.
The lawyers at Meshbesher & Spence do not expect to be paid until the case is resolved.
Do You Have a Case? We Can Help. Call 1-888-728-9866
Distracted Driving Accident Lawyers