Are you guilty of distracted driving? It is fairly obvious to most people that driving while intoxicated is extremely dangerous and illegal. However, in today’s fast-paced, on-the-go world, many drivers are more distracted than ever, which can be just as dangerous.
Types of Distracted Driving
Think of the morning commute. There is the coffee, the quick breakfast sandwich, the traffic, the radio and that never-ending list of things on a person’s mind. There may be children quarreling, lipstick to apply and most dangerously, a cell phone to answer.
While none of these distractions are illegal, they can certainly take your eyes off the road and even your hands off the wheel.
Cell Phones = Distracted Driving
Unlike states such as New York, Arizona does not have any sort of explicit law that bans the use of a cell phone while driving.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that 3,477 people were killed in the United States in 2015 by distracted drivers. This is not including the thousands of accidents and injuries believed to be caused by distracted driving, but not definitive. The NHTSA also reports that texting is the most alarming distraction. Sending or reading a text takes your eyes off the road for 5 seconds. At 55 mph, that’s like driving the length of an entire football field with your eyes closed.
Companies like AT&T have been coming out with public service announcements which tell about real-life stories of people dying over reading an abbreviated message. Many states have also come out with “It can wait” campaigns.
Arizona Distracted Driving
Again, there aren’t any specific laws for distracted driving in the state of Arizona yet. However, legislation is currently underway to pass a law banning cell phone use while driving.
But, some cities in the state do have them. For example, the city of Phoenix has created its own ordinance in which drivers caught on cell phones while driving may be fined up to $500.
Consequences of Distracted Driving
Just because there isn’t a law that bans distracted driving in Arizona does not mean that there aren’t any consequences. See Investigation and Prosecution of Distracted Driving Cases. Of course, the worst consequence would be an accident which resulted in an injury or even death.
The fact is, if you get into an accident as the result of distracted driving, there will still be insurance issues, property damage, personal injury claims and even death. It truly can wait.
If you or someone you know has been involved in a distracted driving accident, you can get more detailed information here, or call the Law Offices of Arnold N. Hirsch at 480-832-3000 for a consultation. With over 35 years of experience in Arizona law, we’ll be there to make sure your rights are protected and you receive a fair settlement.