Nearly anyone who operates a motor vehicle on our interstates or in urban centers will agree that traffic safety is a primary concern. Whether you live, work or travel in and around Frederick, Hagerstown, Cumberland or Washington, D.C., you have likely seen examples of bad driving habits, poor traffic safety, or dangerous vehicle operation; some have maybe even been involved in a collision with another passenger car, SUV, motorcycle or commercial truck.
As Maryland personal injury lawyers, our job first and foremost is to represent the victims of auto accidents and motorcycle wrecks, as well as their families. One area that has gained attention over recent years is the problem of distracted driving exacerbated by cellphone and now smartphone usage. Texting in particular has become a very dangerous pastime for a percentage of the driving public; endangering the lives of most everyone on the road.
A driver can be distracted by a variety of things on the road, but holding a smartphone while trying to text or reading a message off a small screen is one of the more dangerous driving activities. Traffic accident statistics are peppered with cellphone use as one of the contributing factors to accidents involving passenger cars, commercial delivery trucks and 18-wheel tractor-trailer rigs.
Depending on the conditions at the time of the crash, injuries can be serious to life-threatening, not to mention instantly fatal. Occupants of smaller vehicles are particularly at risk, due in part to the huge difference in mass between larger trucks and standard-size automobile. Fatal traffic accidents are known to be caused by distractions involving cellphones and other PDA devices.
Recent news articles may have a commercial solution to the texting problem, which could go a long way to freeing drivers from staring at a tiny screen when they should be watching the road. According to reports, a new text-to-voice service called Text2Go is now available for about $20 a month. Started earlier this year by Kathy Lombardo, Text2Go allows members to text, email and tweet while they drive using text-to-voice service.
Based on information from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHSTA), more than 15 percent of motor vehicle traffic fatalities during 2009 were attributed to distracted driving. The American Automobile Association (AAA) found that one in every five motorists either text or read emails while behind the wheel of their car or truck. Here in Maryland and in the District, texting while driving is a primary offense, for which a police officer can pull an individual over and issue a traffic citation.
To address the growing trend of texting and satisfy a driver’s need to be in continuous communication with friends, family and business associates, the Text2Go service uses a live person on the other end of the phone, who takes the call or text and then handles each interaction. With hands-on cellphone use and texting while driving becoming a primary offenses in many states, company’s like Lombardo’s might become more and more common. Based on news articles, Lombardo believes that making texting while driving against the law, it will not necessarily cause the problem to go away.
Lombardo has reportedly been negotiating with a number of automobile insurers in an effort to help Text2Go customers a discount on their auto insurance.
Call To Text Service Prevents Driving While In-texticated, NyackNewsandViews.com, July 22, 2011