It’s no secret that cellphones, particularly smart phones, have introduced a new danger to the already hazardous activity of driving on our roadways. Many states have implemented distracted driving laws aimed at targeting cellphone use behind the wheel. But, the gravity of this situation is quite staggering, and it is not only distracted driving, but also distracted walking, biking and many other activities that are causing dangerous conditions.
The Los Angeles Times published a recent article looking at the truly astonishing way that distracted activities are causing danger to human life. This danger is evidenced by an increase of over 80 percent in pedestrian deaths in the city of Los Angeles from 2015-2017. These findings are consistent with trends throughout the country. The distraction of drivers and pedestrians alike is thought to be a significant cause of this death toll increase. Over 40% of Americans report having witnessed distracted walking incidents.
The efforts to tackle distracted driving have been rampant throughout the country with at least fifteen states, including California, banning the use of mobile devices while driving, as well as the extensive public service announcements and campaigns warning against the dangers of distracted driving. But now, many cities and towns are focusing their attention on the problem of distracted walking and cycling. The city of Montclair, for instance gained a lot of attention when it recently banned distracted walking through intersections and started issuing $100 fines to pedestrians using their phones while crossing the street.
Despite these efforts, the increasing car accidents and deaths related to distracted driving and other distracted activities continues to show that there is a real problem here. If you have been involved in an accident related to distracted driving, it is important to contact an experienced personal injury attorney to discuss your rights and remedies in such a case.
Source: Los Angeles Times, “Maybe you shouldn’t read this column on your phone,” Patrice Apodaca, March 12, 2018