The Impact of Distracted Driving on Dallas Roads

Over the last year, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recorded more than 3,000 distracted driving-related fatalities in the United States. These incidents are tragically common, and what’s more, a distracted driving-related death can occur in a matter of seconds.

Of course, nobody is immune to the urge to glance at a cell phone or other device while driving. What was formerly regarded as solely a habit of reckless, risk-taking teenagers now affects all generations of motorists. Although teens and inexperienced drivers continue to represent the biggest risk for texting while driving, individuals of all ages routinely look away from the road to use their phones.

The proliferation of mobile phones and other hand-held gadgets has substantially impacted driving on American highways. These gadgets, which are no longer considered a luxury but a need, are constantly available to communicate, research, and entertain at any given time.

There is no denying that an unacceptable number of motorists allow themselves to be sidetracked by their mobile gadgets, putting themselves and others at risk of being hurt or killed in a collision as a result. However, legislation and different limitations that prohibit the use of mobile phones while driving provide authorities with a mechanism to address and prevent these accidents that might have otherwise been avoided.

Data on Distracted Driving in Texas

Any activity that pulls your attention away from the road, whether with your eyes, hands, or thoughts, constitutes distracted driving. Distracted driving contributed to more than 3,500 deaths throughout the country over the last year, or at least 8% of all road fatalities. Texting, taking photos, checking email, and using apps all remain major distractions for drivers.

Distracted driving in Texas persists and manifests in a number of ways. Nearly half of all accidents in Texas in 2022 included a distracted driver, leading to nearly 490 fatalities and 2,830 major injuries. It is risky to multitask while driving in any way, including while texting, eating, grooming, or conversing. Distracted driving affects all drivers and passengers equally, irrespective of age.

According to research, using voice-to-text software, a hands-free gadget, or a portable one won’t make you a better driver. To help drivers avoid tickets or accidents caused by distractions, TxDOT has put together the following list:

  • Pay close attention to the roadway and your surroundings at all times while driving.
  • Before you even think of talking or texting, get off the road and stop your vehicle completely.
  • Put your phone somewhere safe, turn it off, or find a means to restrict incoming calls and messages or set up automatic replies if you must use it while driving.
  • Prior to getting behind the wheel, inform your loved ones and colleagues that you will not be answering any calls or messages.
  • Once again, make sure to maintain your focus entirely on the road at all times; any kind of diversion might be fatal.

Texas Law on Distracted Driving

The Impact of Distracted Driving on Dallas RoadsTo limit the frequency of catastrophic accidents caused by texting and driving, several jurisdictions have implemented stringent anti-texting and driving legislation and launched programs to urge drivers to prioritize road safety. Presently, fifty states prohibit texting while driving, and twenty-five states have taken these rules a step further by outlawing the use of all hand-held devices while driving.

Texting while driving has been a felony in the Lone Star State since September 1, 2017. Penalties for infractions may reach $200.

The entire state of Texas has made it unlawful to text while driving, and several municipalities have outright banned the use of cell phones behind the wheel. However, distracted driving, which includes using a smartphone, is inherently risky. Here is a general breakdown of Texas law on using a cell phone while driving:

  • In Texas, it is illegal to transmit or receive text messages while operating a motor vehicle.
  • It is illegal for learners to use smartphones for the first half a year after getting their license.
  • It is against the law to use a portable electronic device while driving in a school zone.
  • It is illegal for drivers who are under the age of 18 to use portable devices.
  • If there are students on board, a school bus driver is not allowed to use a smartphone at any time.

Remember that local regulations regarding cell phones might vary: some jurisdictions may have more lenient laws, but you should always err on the side of caution and refrain from using a phone at all while you’re driving.

Tips to Avoid Driver Distractions

The first step in preventing distractions, especially when it comes to drivers texting while behind the wheel, is resolving to prioritize the safety of everyone on the road. Here are a few suggestions for drivers who want to avoid distractions behind the wheel:

  1. Disable alerts: Keep your phone on silent or in “Do Not Disturb” mode to avoid interruptions. Alternatively, you could adjust your phone’s settings so that it can respond to messages automatically as they come in while you’re behind the wheel.
  2. Assign someone to communicate on your behalf: If you’re traveling with another person, have them take care of your phone calls and messages.
  3. Pull over your vehicle: Before using your phone, choose a safe spot to pull over and park if you must respond to a call or text immediately.
  4. Be a positive role model: Your duty as a driver is to be a positive role model for other drivers. You should not use your phone while driving and urge other people to do the same.

Contact Auto Accident Lawyers in Dallas

Car accidents have significantly influenced our state’s population, measured in the tens of thousands. Although some victims have relatively minor injuries, others suffer impairments that render them permanently unable to hold gainful employment.

Dallas car accident lawyer should be consulted after a serious crash. Whether you need financial aid for up-and-coming expenses, you should see whether you qualify for compensation.

Here at the Rasansky Law Firm, we proudly represent anyone hurt in car accidents caused by other people’s carelessness. The counsel of our highly skilled and well-respected lawyers has proven invaluable to our clients. We are prepared to investigate the accident and gather information to assess your legal alternatives.

If you’ve been harmed in a vehicle accident in Texas and want to discuss your legal options, please call us at 214-617-1816 for a free consultation.

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Note: The information that was utilized in this post was gathered from the use of secondary sources. This information used has not been confirmed or independently verified. If you locate any information that is not correct, please contact our firm as soon as possible so that we can make the appropriate corrections. If you find any information that is false, we will remove or correct the post immediately after it is brought to our attention.

Disclaimer: As a valued member of the Dallas community, Rasansky Law Firm’s goal is to improve the safety of all residents in the great state of Texas. These posts should not be viewed as a solicitation for business and the information included herein should not be taken as medical or legal advice. The photos used in this post are not representative of the actual crash scene.

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