Florida Fails to Pass Tougher Distracted Driving Laws
After steadily rising over the past two years, car accident deaths actually reduced over the last year, in a recent report by the National Safety Council, who computes that the number of car accident deaths will be about 1% less this year, still an appalling 40,100. Although, as a Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyer, Joseph Lipsky, knows that Florida’s legislature is again refusing to take needed driver safety action which will stem the tide of the rapid rise in deaths caused by a texting driver.
Despite public outcry, Florida’s legislature has yet again failed to take needed action make texting while driving a primary moving violation. A recent evaluation of nearly three million car accidents by the Sun Sentinel demonstrated that car accidents involving a driver who was texting at the time of the crash is rising steadily. A distracted driver was found to cause many types of car accidents which resulted in personal injuries and death. The most frequent types of crashes associated with a distracted driver were: swerving out of a lane of travel, running a stop sign, ignoring other traffic signs and signals and veering into oncoming traffic.
As police officers will attest, too often they pull over a driver whom they believe to be guilty of drunk driver, only to find that the driver is actually lost in a conversation on their cell phone. Yet despite the known danger, Florida’s legislature continues to prevent police officers from being able to stop a driver because they are texting while driving, requiring them to have another valid reason to first stop the car. This inaction keeps Florida in the minority, with only six other states, of not allowing texting while driving to be a primary traffic violation.
The lack of needed enforcement of distracted driving may be the reason why car accidents in which pedestrians and cyclists are injured are not dropping at the rate experts hoped, given the advancement in autonomous driving safety, including automatic emergency braking and impact alerts.
Driver distraction is not limited to cell phones, as cars become more technologically advanced, their in-vehicle infotainment systems are also causing greater driver distraction. Although we represent injured victims of car accidents, it is our greatest desire that through technology and tougher laws, that the number of seriously injured in such car or truck accidents will continue to drop.