According to Florida Highway Safety Motor Vehicle statistics (FHSMV), in 2019 there were 401, 867 total crashes in Florida. Out of that total, 32,081 involved distracted drivers. Distracted drivers include those who are using a cellphone, those who are texting, and those who are using a navigation device.
As a personal injury attorney in Florida, I can tell you that the number of auto accidents caused by distracted drivers is increasing. Although it may seem harmless, there are some serious consequences when a driver is distracted.
WHAT IS DISTRACTED DRIVING?
Distracted driving is when the attention of a driver is pulled away from the road. It includes talking on a cell phone, texting, or playing with any electronic device. Although there are many kinds of distractions that can occur behind the wheel, cell phones are probably the most hazardous because they require the driver’s hands, eyes, and attention. Our reliability on mobile devices has increased the rate of distracted driving accidents. According to the Florida Highway Safety Motor Vehicle, distracted driving claimed the lives of more than 260 people, and has injured at least 14,030 in 2019.
Can I Use My Cell Phone While Driving In Florida?
The answer to that question is, it depends. A driver may use a cell phone to make and receive phone calls but there are a few exceptions. Some of these exceptions are listed in Florida statute 316.306 (3)(a). For example, the statute says that A person may not operate a motor vehicle while using a wireless communications device in a handheld manner in a designated school crossing, school zone, or work zone area. This subparagraph shall only be applicable to work zone areas if construction personnel are present or are operating equipment on the road or immediately adjacent to the work zone area.
To paraphrase, a driver may use a cell phone to make or receive calls while driving; however, the driver may NOT use a cell phone in any manner when he or she is driving through a school zone, or a work zone.
Can I Text While Driving In Florida?
The answer to that question is a clear NO. As stated in Florida statute 316. 305 (3)(a) A person may not operate a motor vehicle while manually typing or entering multiple letters, numbers, symbols, or other characters into a wireless communications device or while sending or reading data on such a device for the purpose of non-voice interpersonal communication, including, but not limited to, communication methods known as texting, e-mailing, and instant messaging.
The above rule clearly states that texting while driving is against the law. More importantly, drivers should understand that communication devices include not only cell phones, it also includes tablets and laptops. All drivers have a duty to follow traffic laws and must be aware of the dangers and legal ramifications of texting and driving.
Contact A Text While Driving Accident Lawyer Now
If you or a loved one has sustained injuries in an auto accident, you may be eligible to receive compensation. As a texting, while driving accident lawyer in Florida, I have helped many individuals recover compensation for the injuries they suffered in these types of accidents. These compensations include lost wages, medical expenses, loss of earning capacity and more. However, it is important to act quickly and to contact a personal injury lawyer when involved in an accident. Contact the Law Office Of Shannon J Sagan if you or a family member has been injured in a text while driving accident. My legal team has secured many verdicts and settlements for victims of motor vehicle accidents. We have the resources and the legal acumen to fight for your rights and to maximize the value of your case. Please call 1800-FLA-LAWYER for a free consultation.