Driver Checking Map on Cellphone Kills Three, Critically Injures Fourth | Law Firm Newswire

Driver Checking Map on Cellphone Kills Three, Critically Injures Fourth

Austin, TX (Law Firm Newswire) May 25, 2016 – Distracted driving is a daily occurrence for hundreds of people. It’s easy to be distracted by texting, a cranky baby, hyper dog, programming the GPS or adjusting temperature controls.

Virtually every driver on the roads in Houston, Texas, and surrounding areas have taken their eyes off the road for what seems like a mere split second. Many distracted drivers pay for their inattention in ways they live to regret for the rest of their lives, if they survive a crash.

Consider the heartbreaking case involving four young women returning home from a spring break holiday and traveling on U.S. 77 near Corpus Christi. An 18-year-old lost control of her car when she looked at her cellphone to check a map, swerving across the median and directly into the path of a big rig.

There was not much left of the vehicle after the impact. The crumpled heap rested in a circle of accident debris. Two women were killed instantly, and the driver, in critical condition on rescue, was taken to hospital. A third passenger made it to hospital alive, but succumbed to her injuries several hours after the accident.

Police reports on the accident indicated the driver’s cellphone was last accessed minutes before the wreck and the phone showed Google Maps had been in use. “Who among us has not done the same thing?” asked Austin injury lawyer Bobby Lee, not involved in the case. “Who doesn’t know someone that has done the same thing at one time or another?”

The statistics relating to distracted driving in Texas are shocking. One in five collisions are due to distracted driving. In 2014 alone, over 100,000 collisions were linked to distracted driving. “That’s a 6 percent increase from 2013,” said Lee. Additionally, in 2013 there were 468 deaths and 3,214 serious injuries. Distracted driving is obviously out of control and it appears that public safety and educational campaigns are not working.

“What is the solution? That’s a tough question to answer,” said Lee, “but perhaps implementing a state-wide law banning texting while driving may be the starting point.” There are only four states in the United States that allow texting and talking on the phone, as well as webbing (surfing the internet). Texas is one of those states, and the death tolls reflects it. Getting anything passed by lawmakers has been and continues to be an uphill battle.

“If you have been in an accident caused by a distracted driver, you may speak to me to discuss your legal options,” said Lee.

Lee, Gober & Reyna
11940 Jollyville Road #220-S
Austin, Texas 78759
Phone: 512.478.8080

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