April: Distracted Driving Awareness Month
Posted on Apr 04, 2012
In response to Congress’ declaration of April as National Distracted Driving Awareness Month, law enforcement throughout California will be ramping up their efforts to catch drivers texting or talking without hands-free devices. Utilizing a two-pronged approach of education and enforcement, agencies will conduct more than 50 traffic safety presentations and deploy additional officers to patrol for distracted motorists.
“Distracted driving is a serious traffic safety problem in California and throughout the country,” explained personal injury attorney James Ballidis, “claiming thousands of lives each year.”
Studies have indicated that using a hand-held device while driving increases the risk of a crash causing injury by four times, with distracted driving accidents claiming the lives of 5,474 people and injuring another 448,000 in 2009, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. While California law prohibits the use of hand-held cell phones and electronic communication devices while driving, other distracting activities, such as applying makeup, are also considered moving violations.
Statewide, law enforcement officers issued more than 52,000 citations during last year’s distracted driving enforcement campaign. Drivers caught texting or talking face fines starting at $159. Subsequent tickets are $279.
Texting, talking, or engaging in other distractions shifts drivers’ attention away from the road, increasing the risk of incurring expensive fines and—more importantly—of suffering serious or fatal injury in a collision.
Additional information on transportation safety, accident prevention, and the personal injury claims process is available to the public free of charge through our office.
If you would like to request one of these free resources, or to speak with a California personal injury attorney, feel free to call 866-981-5596.