With news that 660,000 people may be on an electronic device while driving at any given daylight moment, you might think that things cannot get any worse when it comes to the dangers of distracted driving. Unfortunately, as two recent stories show… you’d be wrong. The dangers of distracted driving go well beyond the fact that there are hundreds-of-thousands of people on the phone or texting at any given moment because there are people who are willing to take unreasonable and perhaps even crazy risks just to use their phones.
Our Boston distracted driving accident lawyers know that every driver who uses a cell phone or sends a text is significantly increasing the chances of hurting himself or someone else. This is why the National Safety Council (NSC) has declared April to be Distracted Driving Month and has organized activities and enforcement efforts to help educate the public about the risks of driving while distracted. Some people, however, are likely well beyond hope and distracted driving month activities would have been unlikely to change their egregious behavior.
Texting Drivers Show The Extremes of Distracted Driving
One of the two drivers who took distracted driving to an extreme paid with his life because of it. According to Boston.com, this driver wasn’t in a car at all- he was flying a medical helicopter. The National Transportation Safety Board investigated the accident since it was a commercial airline cash and NTSB found that texting had played a role.
This accident prompted federal accident investigators to approve a safety alert that should really be classified as common sense. The safety alert cautioned all pilots of aircrafts against using cell phones or other distracting devices during critical operations. Tragically, this obvious warning came too late to save the lives of the texting pilot or the four people who died in the crash through no fault of their own.
While nothing could be worse than a helicopter pilot who decides to texting while flying, an Alabama man recently came a close second in terms of bad distracted-driving decisions. According to NBC News, the man was “double texting” as he drove. This is just as risky as it sounds: he was driving the vehicle with his knees as he used both of his hands to send text messages. The man did not seem to grasp the extent of concern for his behavior, as he reportedly told deputies that he had been “double texting,” since age fifteen.
This man, like the helicopter pilot and like all other distracted drivers, put his passengers at risk. In the case of the Alabama man, these passengers included a 3-year-old child in the backseat. He put his own life and the life of everyone else on the road in danger as well, all to send a text message.
Drivers need to remember that their actions have consequences and that no distracted driving is good distracted driving, even if some types of distracted driving are worse than others. Take the NSC pledge to drive cell free this April’s distracted driving month.
If you or a loved one was involved in a distracted driving accident in Massachusetts, call the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman for a free and confidential appointment — 1-888-367-2900.
Grieving Father Visits Massachusetts to Warn Teens of Distracted Driving Dangers, Feb. 28, 2013, Boston Car Accident Lawyer Blog
New England Traffic Safety Watch–April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month, March 31, 2013, Boston Car Accident Lawyer Blog