It should come as no surprise that more and more California drivers have access to mobile devices. The most alarming statistic is more drivers are spotted using mobile devices yet the number of citations are down when comparing 2016 to 2015. During a California Office of Traffic Safety survey period, 12.8 percent of drivers were seen using mobile devices while behind the wheel of a moving vehicle.
During that same survey period, citations were down 27 percent. In each of the last three years, the number of California drivers killed or injured in an accident in which distracted driving was a factor has increased – from 10,162 to 11,090 last year alone. In 2012, the number of citations for distracted driving were around 168,000 vs around 91,000 last year.
Every single day, we at the SoCal Injury Lawyers, receive phone calls from individuals that have been injured in a car or vehicular accident in which the other driver was distracted while behind the wheel of a vehicle. Many of stated that drivers are much more aware of cops and police officers looking out for cell phone or smartphone usage so they hide it when authorities are around.
There is also the issue of smartphones being used as GPS devices. GPS devices have not been deemed illegal so drivers often argue they were using their phone for Google Maps, Waze or Apple Maps. This is not uncommon as more and more drivers utilize GPS on their phone to get to their destination.
Our goal is to help reduce the number of accidents caused by distracted driving. Our suggestion is to put your smartphone or cell phone in the glove compartment before getting behind the wheel of a vehicle. If you must use your smartphone for GPS there are mounts that can be purchased so a smartphone can be used the way a Garmin or TomTom was once used.
One of the major concerns when it comes to using a smartphone as a GPS device is the fact that text messages, notifications and social media updates will still come through. Even if a driver doesn’t want to check Facebook or Snapchat they will likely receive a notification when a photo has been liked or a private snap has been received. It is very easy to check this quickly while driving a vehicle. Although it is easy, it is not safe.
If you want more information on distracted driving please access our Los Angeles car accident lawyer resource. We have a number of sections devoted to vehicle safety as it pertains to distracted driving. You can also call us at (800) 950-7755 if you have any questions about your legal rights as it relates to distracted driving.