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How significant is distracted driving in Louisiana?

Cellphones are ubiquitous in today’s society. People of all ages, from teenagers to seniors, use cellphones not just to make phone calls, but to send and receive text messages, post on social media, get directions and so much more. In fact, many people in Louisiana and across the nation these days may wonder how they ever got on without their cellphones.

While cellphones are certainly useful — perhaps even essential to some — there are times where a person should avoid using a cellphone. Specifically, a person should not use a cellphone while driving. If a person is using their cellphone while behind the wheel, they are distracted from the task of driving, which could lead to a car accident.

In fact, driver distraction due to cellphone use and other distractions, played a role in many auto accidents in recent years. In fact, from 2011 to 2015 in Louisiana, 192 people lost their lives in a distracted driving accident and 26,977 people suffered injuries in distracted driving accidents. These numbers show that distracted driving is a serious problem in Louisiana that needs to be addressed.

In Louisiana, texting while driving is a primary offense. There are also prohibitions on certain usages of a cellphone in areas designated as school zones. Also, motorists under age 16 cannot use a cellphone at all if they are driving.

Some people may think that using a cellphone while driving is no big deal. It is not unusual to see someone talking on a cellphone while driving or texting on a cellphone while stopped at a red light. However, any distraction that takes a motorist’s eyes, hands and attention off the task of driving could lead to serious or even deadly car accidents. Louisianans who have been injured due to a distracted driver, or their loved ones if the victim was killed in such a crash, may want to explore their legal options to determine what course of action to take against the driver that caused the accident.