Reducing Distracted Driving

Posted by on Nov 14, 2017 in Personal Injury | 0 comments

A technology push is necessary in order to overcome the increasing amount of distracted driving taking place on the road.

With the increased prevalence of technology, with its ever-present hold on our attention, driving, already dangerous for a myriad of reasons, has become a significantly riskier activity. For instance, according to the personal injury attorneys of Brunkenhoefer, P.C., last year there was a 3.59 percent increase over 2015 for deaths related to distracted driving. That amounts to one death every two hours and 20 minutes.

In Texas, there were 14,202 serious crashes with over 17,000 injuries.

These statistics prove that driving isn’t just dangerous, it’s becoming more dangerous every day.

The solution may not be obvious, however, and should be highlighted here.

The first part of the solution is a greater push for cheap, easily available technology that will encourage people to put their phones down.

While hands-free technology exists, it is not that prevalent at this time. Most car drivers do not use the technology. A greater push for this would help reduce crashes. For instance, free handsfree sets could be given out at local DMV/BMV locations when regular activities like renewing licenses took place.

Another change could be more focus on handsfree software within the phone. While Siri has her charms, as the program becomes more intuitive and responsive, more people will take advantage while driving. A program that effective reads and writes texts and emails, for example, would be a great assistance and might encourage more drivers to switch from playing with their phones to speaking to them.

The second part of the solution also involves technology to some extent. There needs to be stricter enforcement of distracted driving laws. If someone is caught with a phone out, all fines and punishments should be automatically doubled. One way to catch people would be to use the phones themselves. A program should be automatically installed on all phones that can be accessed by police to prove if the driver was using the phone at a particular moment within, say, the last 48 hours.

Such a program would allow police to definitively prove whether a person was focused on driving or not, and once that was possible, drivers would be far less willing to risk losing focus.

The third and final part of the solution is simply to increase driver education about distracted driving. While many lose focus over finding the right song or reading an important text, most aren’t doing so thinking they are being unsafe. They simply aren’t thinking at all. A series of commercials or mail-out pamphlets might help educate the general driving populace about the very real danger of driving with a phone in their hands.

The smartphone has done a great deal to improve modern life. It is almost unthinkable to go about life without one now. But as smartphones become so prominent, more responsibility needs to be taken for their misuse. That means we should be focused on teaching people how dangerous using their phones can be when driving and punishing those who do it anyway.

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Truck Accidents in Memphis

Posted by on Aug 7, 2017 in Personal Injury | 0 comments

Due to the sheer size of the United States, with its sprawling cities and the vast rural expanses between them, one of the most direct ways to transport goods across this huge country is via 18-wheeler. These behemoths are huge; they can weigh up to 80,000 pounds! Regular car accidents are bad enough, but a crash involving a semi truck can affect thousands of people. Entire highways can be shut down for hours, causing traffic to back up for miles. Other vehicles can also get caught in the crash, resulting in more injuries or fatalities. Buses are even more of an issue since the cargo they carry is much more precious. Many believe self-driving trucks and buses will solve all of our problems, and it may certainly be a step in the right direction, but the number of large truck accidents is already declining.

According to Tennessee crash statistics from 2006 – 2008, Shelby county, which encompasses the majority of the city of Memphis, experienced the highest number of medium to large truck crashes per year than any other county in the state, and it beats them by a long shot. In 2006, there 2190 crashes in Shelby county, nearly double the number of crashes in Knox county, which takes the second place slot. Thankfully, the number of large truck crashes in the Memphis area has been steadily decreasing. In 2007, there were 1876 crashes, and in 2008 there were 1584. There are many possible reasons for the decline in crashes. Recently, awareness has spread about the dangers of texting and driving, and drunk driving is punished more harshly in many areas.

Even though large truck crashes have been declining, the number of bus commercial bus crashes has remained steady during the same period. In 2006, there were 268 crashes. That number dipped to 250 in 2007, but then rose back to 266 in 2008. Why has the number of truck crashes been decreasing, but the number of bus crashes has remained steady? Many truck drivers travel with companions, so it could be that sleeping in shifts and having another driver available makes it easier to stay focused and alert. Perhaps trucking companies have actively been trying to reduce accidents, and commercial bus companies have not felt the need? With so many things that could go wrong, it is important that the transportation company in charge of these vehicles focus on consistently trying to prevent accidents. In fact, there are personal injury lawyers that deal specifically with large, truck related accidents, and can fine companies that are not making sure their equipment is properly serviced to avoid a crash.

Even then technology progresses to the point where we can have self driving trucks and buses, not all of our problems will be solved. Other people on the road can still accidents, and huge trucks can cause a lot of collateral damage. These vehicles will still need to be maintained, and companies will need to continue to make a conscious effort towards ensuring every driver’s safety.

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