A motorcycle advocate from Cape Coral is calling for tougher distracted driving legislation. What caused the uproar? A recent motorcycle accident that claimed the life of a local 20-year-old rider, and which is being blamed on a driver’s lack of attention, according to FOX 4. The accident happened after his motorcycle was reportedly clipped by a 17-year-old behind the wheel of an SUV.
“In my opinion, [motorcycle accidents] do not have to happen,” said Wayne Cerra, the President of the Southwest Florida Chapter of ABATE (American Bikers Aimed Towards Education). “Distracted driving is the number one cause of these crashes today.”
Our Cape Coral accident lawyers understand that distracted driving is one of the leading causes of fatal traffic accidents across the nation. It’s also a common and deadly factor in many motorcycle accidents. Although we have tougher laws regarding distracted driving that take effect here in the state of Florida in October, officials with ABATE say much more needs to be done.
According to Investor’s Business Daily, technology is oftentimes blamed for these kinds of accidents, but many officials believe that it’s actually the same technology that can help to fix the problem, too.
Safe driving advocates are working to get the technology to do the work. These organizations are mulling guidelines released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in April. They’re trying to get auto manufacturers to eliminate the use of these devices while the vehicle is in motion. This includes GPS devices, cell phones, text messaging devices and all other forms of infotainment.
“We are aware that many manufacturers have already begun taking into consideration concerns such as the complexity of the tasks involving an electronic device, the length of time a driver’s attention is diverted from the primary task of driving,” says the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
According to the Administration, text messaging drivers double their risk for an accident or near accident when they take their eyes off the road. Text messages take a driver’s eyes off the road for an average of 23 seconds.
Ray LaHood, the secretary for the NHTSA says that voice recognition isn’t the answer either. He says that the systems – like those that let people compose texts using voice commands while driving – do not meet his standards for safety. The car manufacturers argue otherwise, saying that they’re helping to reduce the risks of accidents, according to The New York Times.
Still, safe driving advocates view distracted driving as an “epidemic.”
“If somebody is trying to dial a number, even if it’s voice-activated, they’re obviously distracted from what they’re supposed to be doing,” said LaHood.
Think about that the next time you’re heading down the road, behind the wheel, and decide that you need to make a call or reply to a text. Traveling at 50 or 60 miles an hour doesn’t seem like the safest time to do it, does it? Stay focused and arrive alive by minimizing distractions (even with voice activation) when you’re behind the wheel.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a traffic accident, call Associates and Bruce L. Scheiner, Attorneys for the Injured, today for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your rights. Call 1-800-283-2900.
More Blog Entries:
Florida Teen Drivers and Their Deadliest Days Behind the Wheel, Florida Injury Lawyer Blog, July 29, 2013
Top Traffic Citations To Hike Insurance Premiums, Florida Injury Lawyer Blog, July 17, 2013