New data from the New Jersey Department of Transportation reveals that distracted driving continues to be a major issue in the state. As reported by The Star-Ledger, there were 3,287 car accidents as a result of cell phone use in the year 2007 and 3,244 New Jersey cell phone-related car accidents in 2011. This means that distracted driving accidents have remained virtually unchanged since state legislators passed laws regarding cell phone use in the year 2008.
According to N.J.S.A. 39:4-97-3: “The use of a wireless telephone or electronic communication device by an operator of a moving motor vehicle on a public road or highway shall be unlawful.” The Star-Ledger reports that about 100,000 summonses were issued since this distracted driving law was passed. Yet, the number of cell phone accidents has barely gone down.
The report also points out how Bluetooth headsets are often involved in injury accidents. Under current law, it is legal to drive while utilizing a Bluetooth headset. Unfortunately, these hands-free devices were involved in 40 percent of the crashes linked to phone use. Individuals who are on the phone, even if they are using a hands-free device, are driving distracted. Distracted driving occurs any time a driver takes his or her eyes off the road, hands off the wheel, or mind off the task at hand. Any one of those forms of distracted driving can have serious consequences.
Anyone who has suffered an injury in an accident due to a distracted driver would be well advised to call the law offices of Lependorf & Silverstein. Our reputed distracted driving accident victim attorneys in NJ provide no cost consultations. We know how to hold distracted drivers accountable for their actions. Please contact us at (609) 240-0040 to find out how we can help.