In today’s digital world, being “connected” 24/7 feels like a must. It’s not! In fact, sometimes, it’s just not possible. Here’s a thought experiment for you: What news absolutely cannot wait until you reach your destination or the next pit stop?
Distracted driving – It is a sore subject for the families of those thousands of people killed every year in car accidents caused by inattentive motor vehicle operators. The stories are endless and heartbreaking: a bus full of school aged children run off of the road, seemingly causeless head-on collisions, a child on a bicycle run over just minutes from home. It’s not just cars, either. These accidents have been the fault of bus operators, truck drivers, and train conductors.
In a country where almost three quarters of adults aged 18 to 49 admit to sending text messages while driving, it is obvious that action needs to be taken. Any Las Vegas car accident attorney can see that. There are lobbying agencies throughout the country, some headed by celebrities, for national laws against distracted driving. But most states have not yet enacted specific laws against distracted driving, or their laws are “secondary” – that is, only enforceable when the driver is pulled over for some other traffic infraction.
Nevada currently has no prohibitions on texting and cell phone use while behind the wheel of a car. The state legislature cites distracted driving as the number one cause of fatal accidents in Nevada. Pending legislation (as of 2011) would enact specific prohibitions including handheld cell phone use with fines in place for repeated violations or particularly egregious violations, such as those resulting in death or debilitation. Unfortunately, because specific legislation against cell phone use on the road doesn’t exist in this state, in the event of an accident with a distracted driver, you will need the best Las Vegas car accident lawyer to handle the case.
Debates continue as to how new legislation would affect the behavior of drivers on the road. Some lawmakers are concerned that sudden stops and pull overs (“I brake for texting”) and the act of hiding the cell phone – or whatever the distraction – may cause more accidents than it prevents. Other opponents of driving restrictions cite personal freedoms.
What constitutes distracted driving is in question with some figures of authority, but many take the “see it, know it” approach. Applying make up or primping in the rear view mirror? Looking at a cell phone screen instead of watching for lane changes? Tilting the head back to gulp a beverage while the car is in motion? Check, check, and check. If you have ever been involved in an accident when the other driver was distracted, you would be wise to schedule a free consultation with a Las Vegas car accident attorney.