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Friday, September 17, 2010 Is “Two-Second Turnoff Day”

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James E. Ballidis
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Over 822 billion text messages were sent and received on all wireless communications carriers’ networks in the last six months of 2009, according to the wireless industry trade association, CTIA. Unfortunately, explains an Orange County car accident lawyer, many of the texts were sent from behind the wheel of a moving vehicle. Since California’s ban on texting-while-driving was implemented in January 2009, the number of drivers performing this distracting and dangerous activity has nearly doubled, according to surveys of Orange County drivers conducted by the Automobile Club of Southern California. 

After nearly 6,000 people died and 515,000 were injured in car accidents that could be attributed to distracted driving in 2008, California joined six other states in officially banning texting-while-driving. Authorities, however, have faced two obstacles to enforcing the new law: most drivers keep the mobile communication device on their lap and out of view from highway patrol and police; and the penalty that accompanies a citation for texting-while-driving—a mere $20-dollar fine—is insufficient to deter drivers. 

Initially, incidents of texting-while-driving declined after the ban became effective. Whereas the Automobile Club had found that 1.4% of Orange County motorists were texting on the road at any given time of day in mid to late 2008, in May and July of 2009, the Club recorded a 70% drop in the activity to 0.5% of motorists. By July of 2010, explains an Orange County car accident lawyer, this number had climbed to 2.7% of Orange County drivers—almost twice as many as were recorded prior to the ban’s implementation. 

In response to this escalation in texting-while-driving, the Automobile Club, working in concert with the U.S. Department of Transportation, is promoting Seventeen Magazine’s “Two-Second Turnoff Day” this Friday, September 17, 2010. On this day, drivers across the country are asked to “take two seconds” to turn off their cell phone before starting their cars. 

Texting-while-driving is extremely dangerous, as the activity distracts drivers’ hands, eyes, and minds from the road. The Orange County car accident lawyers at Allen, Flatt, Ballidis, and Leslie will be participating in “Two-Second Turnoff Day” by turning off their cell phones before starting their ignitions tomorrow and hope that drivers everywhere will do the same. 

Additional information on distracted driving, car accidents, and other subjects relevant to personal injury law is available to the public free of charge. To request an article or a book, or to speak with an Orange County car accident lawyer, feel free to call 1 (866) 981-5596. 

Category: Car Accidents

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