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Distracted Driving-Cell Phone Use

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susan_harr6 years ago

The portion of drivers reportedly distracted at the time of the fatal crashes increased from 7 percent in 2005 to 11 percent in 2009, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA.)

Distraction is defined by the NHTSA as “a specific type of inattention that occurs when drivers divert their attention away from the task of driving to focus on another activity instead.”

While there are several categories of distractions, cell phone use (phone calls, texting, social networking etc.) has been identified as one of the leading distractions for drivers.

Distracted Driving Statistics-Cell Phones

  • Cell phone subscriptions have grown exponentially from 1988 through 2009. About 89 percent, or approximately 277 million of all Americans, have a cell phone, according to CTIA – The Wireless Association.
  • 77 percent of individuals reported that they talk on the phone while driving at least some of the time.
  • Drivers who use hand-held devices while driving are four times as likely to get into crashes serious enough to injure themselves or others.


  • In early 2010, 21 States enacted new graduated drivers licensing (GDL) laws. These are laws that govern the procedures for young drivers get their licenses.
  • As of January 2011, nine States, the District of Columbia and the Virgin Islands ban hand-held cell phone use for all drivers.
  • As of January 2011, 32 States, the District of Columbia and Guam ban texting by all drivers.
Enforcement Techniques

The NHTSA’s “Put it Down” Campaign literature states that, historically, high visibility enforcement programs have been successful enforcing state laws (such as seat belt laws.)

According to the NHTSA, these similar campaigns have shown that “high visibility enforcement works because, with many distracted drivers the fear of a citation and significant fine outweighs their fear of being injured or killed in a crash.”

This means that soon, “click it or ticket” may be joined by other high-profile campaigns that attempt to use fines to curb the use of cell phones and other distracting devices on the roadways.

Contact an Experienced Distracted Driving Attorney

If you suspect you have been injured because of a distracted driver, contact Thomas J. Henry for immediate assistance. We have built a reputation for innovative investigations, creative litigation and maximum results for our clients.

We pride ourselves in our client satisfaction. Contact us to schedule an appointment that works with your schedule. We are available 24/7, nights and weekends.


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