New Report Provides Guidance to States to Prevent Distracted Driving Auto Accidents

The Governor’s Highway Safety Association has released a new report that provides recommendations to state highway offices on steps that they can take to reduce the incidence of distracted driving. A significant number of car accidents are caused by drivers who are distracted due to their use of telephones, radios, eating and other activities in their car.

The Governor’s Highway Safety Association released the report titled Directing Drivers’ Attention: State Highway Safety Office Roadmap for Combating Distracted Driving.  In the report, the Governor’s Highway Safety Association presents a number of recommendations that states can use in order to reduce the risk of drivers causing auto accidents while distracted. These types of car accidents are a significant cause of personal injuries that occur in accidents.

The recommendations are broad- ranging, and include everything from enforcement and law making to infrastructure and education. One of the more important topics that the Governor’s Highway Safety Association addresses in its report is the role of distracted driving laws.  The Governor’s Highway Safety Association is recommending that states amend their Graduated Driver’s Licensing laws to restrict the number of passengers that teen drivers can have in their car.  Teen passengers can be a major source of distraction for novice drivers. Fortunately, Georgia has already adopted this measure. New teen drivers in Georgia cannot have a passenger who is not a family member during the first 6 months of driving and then is gradually, over time, allowed to have passengers who are not relatives.

The Governor’s Highway Safety Association also recommends that state highway safety offices target legislators by providing data about the rates of car accidents involving distracted drivers every year, as well as the cost of these auto accidents in order to push for legislative action against distracted driving.  States like Georgia have done much to reduce the number of motorists driving while distracted by their cell phones and other gadgets.  More could be done to keep motorists safe every year from the threat of electronic and other distractions.

Another important factor is education of motorists.  The Governor’s Highway Safety Association here specifically focuses on the need for training teen drivers and how they can effectively and in a non -confrontational manner, speak up when they see motorists who are distracted, as well as employers who must understand that they will be at risk of liability when a driver causes a car accident on the job.

The report also asks state highway offices to focus more on stringent enforcement of distracted driving laws and to evaluate the impact of such enforcement on distracted driving rates.  Another tactic could be the use of electronic technology like cameras to identify distracted drivers.  Another interesting recommendation is the use of infrastructure improvements including the use of rumble strips that could deter distracted driving.  The Governor’s Highway Safety Association recommends that state highway offices apply for federal grants to fund their efforts against distracted driving.

Every year, thousands of motorists in Georgia are injured in auto accidents caused by distracted drivers. A driver does not have to be using a cell phone to be distracted.  Distractions can come from other sources like passengers in your car, objects inside the car, external distractions like billboards, actions like snacking or applying makeup inside the car and so on.

The Atlanta car crash attorneys at Katz Personal Injury Lawyers are dedicated to the representation of persons injured in car accidents in the metro Atlanta region and across Georgia.  If you or a loved one have suffered injuries in a car accident, talk to a lawyer at our firm and determine if you have legal options to a claim for damages.   You may be eligible for compensation that includes medical expenses, lost income and other types of damages.  Talk to an attorney at our firm and discuss your case.

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