Accident victims may feel their pain compounded when they learn that their accident was entirely preventable. Preventable auto accidents include those that occur because a driver is distracted by a cellphone. Minnesota lawmakers did their part by passing a law to ban the use of hand-held devices while driving. One year later, many drivers still have not gotten the message.
State police report that distracted driving resulted in 32 deaths last year. Over 3,000 victims of distracted driving accidents suffered injuries, some of them life-altering. Shockingly, in the year following the hands-free law, police wrote tickets to almost 21,000 drivers for using their hand-held phones. Even fines of up to $300 do not seem to deter some drivers from using their phones behind the wheel.
Safety advocates remind drivers that they can still use their phones while driving as long as they don’t hold them in their hands. For example, a driver can mount the phone to the dashboard, engage voice commands or use one-touch activation. It is a far better idea for a driver to pull over to use a device. Unfortunately for those sharing the road, many drivers continue to hold their phones to make calls, send text messages, program their GPS systems and activate entertainment options.
Those who suffer injuries or lose loved ones in auto accidents involving a distracted driver may be left with medical bills, funeral expenses and the inability to work to earn money to afford what they need. Beyond that, they may be seeking a way to hold accountable the distracted driver responsible for their pain and suffering. By reaching out to an experienced Minnesota attorney, they may learn of their options.