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Hands-Free Cell Phone Use Still Contributes to Car Accidents

 Posted on November 06, 2020 in Personal Injury

Hays County personal injury attorney car accident

According to a recent study, teens are not the only ones continuing to use their cell phones behind the wheel and hands-free devices may not provide the increased safety they purportedly offer. Despite the thousands killed and hundreds of thousands injured each year in motor vehicle accidents around the United States, middle-aged adults—not just teens and young adults—admit to using mobile devices while driving to make and receive calls, to text, and to check email or other apps. While many use hands-free devices, many continue to hold the phone in their hands, which is against the law for young drivers in Texas and generally considered to be unsafe for drivers of any age.

Distracted Driving Study

Researchers from the University of California, San Diego looked to build on the findings of other studies that examined the distracted driving habits of teenagers and younger adults. To do so, the team focused on adults ages 30-64, surveying more than 700 individuals, and publishing their findings in the Journal of Transport & Health. While the respondents represented less than an ideal cross-section of society as a whole—nearly 70 percent were white, 75 percent were women, and about 68 percent had an income in excess of $50,000 per year—the project was able to identify several alarming trends.

Among those surveyed, 75 percent said they made hands-free calls while driving, while 56 percent admitted to using handheld phones. Only three in 10 acknowledged the increased risk of distraction that accompanies even hands-free cell phone use, and almost 90 percent believed themselves to be “capable” or “very capable” of driving safely while on the phone. About 30 percent admitted to texting while driving, and almost 70 percent said they texted at red lights.  

Safety Concerns

There seemed to be no correlation in the study’s finding between cell phone use and children. Parents were just as likely to use their phones as non-parents, and there was no discernible difference in behavior when children were in the car.

The trust in the safety of hands-free devices, researchers indicated, may be a bit misplaced. Previous studies have indicated that any kind of phone conversation—hands-free or not—can diminish reaction time behind the wheel as much as blood alcohol content (BAC) at or over the legal limit. This translates to distracted drivers not having enough time to stop before colliding with another vehicle or pedestrian. 

Call an Austin, Texas Personal Injury Lawyer

The unfortunate reality is that thousands of accidents are caused every year by distracted driving behavior. If you have been injured in this type of collision, contact an experienced Travis County car accident attorney. You deserve to be compensated for your injuries and at Morales Law Office, Attorneys at Law, PLLC., we will provide the legal representation you need throughout the process. Call us today at 512-474-2222 to schedule a free, introductory consultation, and start putting your life back together.



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