Houston Texting Accident Attorneys
Representing Accident Survivors & Families Across the U.S.
Distracted driving is the leading cause of car accidents in the U.S. Among the different types of distraction, texting and cell phone use leads the way in causes of motor vehicle collisions. These accidents often result in serious injuries, permanently debilitating injuries, and even death.
NHTSA has provided the most commonly-used analogy to represent the dangers of texting while driving:
"Texting…involves manual, visual, and cognitive distraction simultaneously. Sending or reading a text takes your eyes off the road for 4.6 seconds. At 55 mph, that's like driving the length of an entire football field while blindfolded."
Did you know nearly 20% of all traffic fatalities each year could be avoided had it not been for a driver who was texting while driving? This is shocking, especially considering that texting and driving have been outlawed in most states. In Texas, all "novice" drivers (license for less than a year) are banned from using cells while driving in any capacity. Texas has also banned texting and driving for bus drivers and drivers in school zones. While texting may not be outlawed for every driver, it can be considered negligence if it contributes to a collision.
Driving While Texting: Is It That Bad?
34 states and the District of Columbia currently have laws prohibiting people from driving while texting. In 31 states, it's considered a primary offense, which means an officer can pull you over just for texting. Don't think that means people aren't still doing it. A study released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in December of 2011 reveals that the percentage of drivers who texted while driving increased from 0.6 % of drivers in 2009 to 0.9 % in 2010. In New York, where texting and driving were only made a primary offense in July 2011, the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) had issued 4,634 tickets for the crime by the middle of September.
If so many of us are doing it, can texting while driving really be that dangerous?
The answer, unfortunately, is a resounding yes. In the same study that revealed the percentage of drivers who text and drive, the NHTSA found that reading or writing texts behind the wheel increases your chances of having an accident by 2300%! About 6,000 deaths and half a million injuries are caused by distracted drivers every year. Many of these deaths involve accidents with large trucks. In general, a truck accident is more likely to result in a fatality due to the vehicle's sheer size. A distracted truck driver is 23.2 times more likely to crash than a driver paying full attention to the road. Considering that, you can quickly see how deadly a problem it can become.
Tech developers are doing their best to fight fire with fire. Text Zapper, a new app, disables phones from sending messages while vehicles are in motion using Trakker GPS technology to determine the speed and position of the car.
Young Drivers & Cell Phone Use
Another worrisome statistic is a majority of drivers who choose to text while driving are typically between the ages of 16 to 24. More than half of all teenagers who own cell phones between the ages of 16 and 17 say they frequently text or talk on the phone while driving, per research from the Pew Research Foundation. Drivers between the ages of 16 and 24 are considered "inexperienced" and at a higher risk for being in an accident. Combine inexperience with distraction and it is a recipe for disaster. Research also seems to indicate that teenagers who are passengers being driven by other teenagers who text and drive are less likely to speak up about texting. When other teens don't speak up, it can translate into a texting and driving accident that could end up costing them their lives.
Texting & Driving Accident FAQ
What makes texting while driving so dangerous?
Texting is an activity that takes a driver’s hands from the wheel, eyes off the road, and attention from driving. It affects every single aspect of safe driving, dramatically increasing the chances of a collision. Even the most experienced and careful driver can cause an accident while texting. Texting while driving increases one’s risk of serving out of a lane, rear-ending another driver, missing a stop sign, running through a red light, hitting a pedestrian or cyclist, hitting a parked vehicle, hitting an animal, or even driving into oncoming traffic.
What can I do to prevent texting and driving?
The most important thing you can do is to never drive while distracted. This includes texting while driving and other distractions as well, like eating, adjusting your in-vehicle navigation system, or even applying make-up or shaving. When you’re driving, just drive. Keep your attention on the task at hand, your hands on the wheel, and your eyes on the road. If you’re a parent, lead by example. Never text while driving and demand that your teenage children do the same.
You can also help by spreading the word about the dangers of texting while driving. Talk to your friends and family and make sure they know your stance on it. If you’re with a driver who picks up his or her phone while on the road, politely ask that they put it down and concentrate on driving. Speak up and be proactive about stopping texting and driving before it claims more lives.
What should I do if I was injured in a crash with a driver who was texting?
If you were injured in a car accident and you suspect that the other driver was distracted—or if you saw them looking at their phone—get medical treatment and make sure you involve an attorney. Texting while driving is against the law in Texas and if it caused your accident, the driver who was texting should be held responsible for your medical bills, damage to your vehicle, lost earnings, and possibly more. You deserve a chance to rebuild your life after a texting while driving accident, and it starts with getting medical care and involving a competent lawyer.
Serving Houston, Texas, and the entire U.S., our team of trial attorneys is highly experienced in handling cases involving texting and driving accidents. We are here to answer your questions and get you on the road to a swift and positive resolution of your case—one that leaves you with the complete support and care you need, for as long as you need it.
Call (888) 493-1629 to Discuss Your Case with Arnold & Itkin
Victims of texting and driving accidents may be able to file lawsuits against the negligent driver. While the driver may have already incurred a fine or other penalties, there is still legal action you can take. By hiring an attorney, victims can fight for compensation to recover the cost of medical bills, rehabilitation, damages, lost wages, and noneconomic damages such as pain and suffering. Arnold & Itkin can speak with you if you or a loved one was involved in an accident due to texting and driving. Victims of these can often be seriously injured, and even killed in some severe cases. Statistically, a majority of drivers are likely to be involved in at least one collision in their lifetimes that is caused by distracted driving. Don't let the negligent driver get away with their actions.
If you want to fight for your future, please contact a Houston texting accident lawyer from our firm at (888) 493-1629.