South Jersey Distracted Driving Lawyer
Texting and driving is dangerous, period. So is driving while speaking on your handheld cell phone or entering an address into your GPS. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, driver distraction in 2010 was the cause of 3,092 fatal crashes, which represented 18 percent of all vehicle fatalities that year. Distracted driving was also the cause of 416,000 injuries that year. I am sure the nearly half a million people injured each year will agree that distracted driving is a dangerous epidemic. According to a Pew survey, 40 percent of teens admitted to being in a car while the driver was being distracted from talking on a cell phone. One study found that texting while driving increases the risk of an accident by 23 times. This is an incredible statistic.
Each state is primarily responsible for enacting its own driving laws. As a result, laws against texting and driving and other forms of distracted driving vary from state to state. As a South Jersey distracted driving lawyer, I, Joseph Monaco, in particular, keep up on the driving laws in these two states. New Jersey recently passed legislation that increases the fines for talking or texting on a handheld cell phone while driving. The law also enables judges to suspend driving privileges and assess points for a third or subsequent offense. Cell phone use has been a primary offense in New Jersey since 2007, which means that a police officer may pull a driver over just for the improper use of a cell phone. Previously, an officer could only issue a citation if the driver was pulled over for a different traffic violation. New Jersey recently passed Nikki’s Law, which authorizes the posting of traffic signs reminding drivers to not text and drive. In Pennsylvania, the law prohibits as a primary offense any driver from using an Interactive Wireless Communication Device (IWCD) to send, read or write a text-based communication while his or her vehicle is in motion. Unfortunately, the current law only provides for a $50 fine, which is not much of a deterrent, and considerably below the penalties and fines enacted in New Jersey. Interestingly, a complete ban on cell phone use while driving was part of the bill that passed the Senate, but it was ultimately stripped from the bill by the House.
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Incidentally, someone may be held responsible for your accident even if they were not driving. A person may be deemed at fault for an accident if they knowingly texted a message to someone they knew was driving. This rule was established in New Jersey by the Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division in the case of Kubert v. Best. Although this case originated in New Jersey, there really is no reason to believe that a Court from another jurisdiction would not adopt its reasoning, especially with texting and driving being the focus of considerable public debate.
If you or a family member have been injured or killed in an accident wherein the driver causing the accident was needlessly texting and driving, or distracted in some other way such as talking on the phone or entering an address into a GPS, you need an experienced Distracted Driving and Texting Accident Lawyer on your side.
Contact An Experienced South Jersey Distracted Driving Lawyer
It is very important that you contact me as soon as possible so the accident can be thoroughly investigated including preserving crucial evidence. As a Second Generation Trial Lawyer, I work tirelessly to continue my family’s tradition of fighting for the underdog. Call or text me at 609-277-3166, 215-546-3166 or to learn how I can help you and your family. The initial consultation is free and my firm offers the No Recovery, No Fee Guarantee