A new study conducted by the Highway Loss Data Institute suggests that laws banning handheld cell phone use or texting while driving may not considerably decrease the risk of traffic accidents, according to Cnet.com. Experts instead suggest dealing with the problem of distracted drivers in general. The research for the study was collected in New York, California, Connecticut, Washington, D.C., and other neighboring states that do not have cell-phone related bans for comparison. The study concluded that auto accident rates did not change after the bans were put in effect, which was the same for nearby states without bans as well.
Essentially, the study determined that distraction, and not cell phones specifically, are the cause of accidents. Examples of distracted behaviors include: changing the radio station, having a conversation with another passenger, eating, or programming a GPS. Any of these distractions can increase a driver’s chance of being involved in a serious crash. A spokesman for the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) echoes a similar sentiment stating that even though more than 89% of Americans have cell phones and usage has exploded over the last few years, “there has been no uptick nationally in the number of car accidents.”
The IIHS spokesman says targeting specific technologies is not the answer to combating the problem of distracted driving, and feels there are more effective ways to prevent dangerous traffic accidents rather than simply passing laws banning cell phone use behind the wheel.
This study shows that laws regarding cell-phone use may not be significantly effective in preventing distracted driving and traffic accidents, so it is ultimately up to Maryland drivers to avoid distraction when driving to lessen the risk of being in a motor vehicle crash. However, a negligent driver may still pose a danger to innocent motorists. If you have been involved in a distracted driving accident, the Waldorf distracted driving accident lawyers with Alpert Schreyer will work to obtain the compensation you need to recover from any at-fault parties. Please call (844) 637-7274 to discuss your case with one of our legal professionals.