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Car accidents caused by texting

Texting while driving is dangerous, and it is also against the law in Arkansas except in cases of emergency. In 2010, 3,092 motorists died and 416,000 suffered injuries due to texting, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. In addition, driving while texting makes it 23 times more likely a driver will be involved in an accident. Government agencies, industry and various safety organizations are trying to decrease the practice.

Among drivers 18 to 20 years of age, 11 percent admitting to texting when involved in an accident. In addition, 40 percent of young drivers stated that they were passengers in a vehicle while the driver was texting. While there is currently no ban nationwide concerning texting and driving, many states have laws in place that make it an offense. In Arkansas, it is a primary offense if a driver is seen texting on a mobile device. This allows police to stop the driver on that observation alone.

Officials urge parents to talk to their teenagers about the dangers of texting and driving. Texting takes a driver's focus away from the road, and formulating family rules to avoid this behavior is important. Since teenagers learn from watching others, it is important for parents to obey the same rules.

If a distracted driver causes a motor vehicle accident due to texting, it may result in serious injury to a passenger or to another motorist. This might cause financial problems such as lost time from work and medical bills. The injured party may seek to recover such pecuniary losses by filing a personal injury lawsuit and may benefit from talking with an attorney about the damages that may be recoverable.

Source: FCC, "The dangers of texting while driving ", November 20, 2014

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