Believe it or not, South Carolina is one of the very last states in the U.S. to pass some kind of distracted driving law. We’re talking cell phones in the driver’s seat here. It’s a serious distraction that’s taking a lot of lives each and every year. Officers will yell you that it’s injuring and killing more people annually than drunk driving, according to WMBF News.
Regardless, drivers in the state are free to talk on phones and text message as they please, behind the wheel, while putting everyone on our roadways at danger. So why does South Carolina love being last?
Our Anderson car accident lawyers understand that text messaging in the driver’s seat may be one of the most dangerous things you can do out there. On average, a driver takes their eyes off the road for 4 seconds for each text message. When you’re traveling at highway speeds, that means you can travel the entire length of a football field without ever setting eyes on the road. Consider that about half of all drivers do that each and every day, time and time and time again. Scary, right?
Senator Rankin has been working over the last couple of years to get a ban on text messaging while driving on the books. So far, his work in Columbia has come up short. He says that the actions among lawmakers are embarrassing.
Side Note: South Carolina was also one of the last states to pass a booster seat requirement for children, require alcohol limits for impaired drivers, pass a 55-mile-per-hour speed limit and also so require seat belts for adults. And with the text messaging while driving law, we’re just one state away from being the last as well.
As it stands now, more than 20 percent of all accidents are caused by drivers who are using a cell phone or text messaging while driving.
The proposed laws currently being looked at in South Carolina have fines ranging from $25 to $500.
Texting in traffic isn’t simply a problem among teens and more than 45 percent of adults admit that they text while driving. Texting drivers are 23 times more likely to be involved in a crash than non-texting drivers.
Did you know that, in South Carolina, accident deaths cost the state over $1 billion in medical costs and lost work.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that in 2010 driver distraction was the cause of 18 percent of all fatal crashes – with more than 3,000 people killed – and crashes resulting in an injury – with 416,000 people wounded.
Until lawmakers are able to agree, we’re stepping in and asking you to step up. Take control of your cell phone, don’t let it control you. You are the only one who decides when and if you send and read a text message.
If you or someone you love has been injured in an accident, contact the Carolina injury lawyers at the Lee Law Offices today by calling 800-887-1965.
More Blog Entries:
Fatalities from Pickup Truck Crash in North Carolina, North Carolina Car Accident Lawyers Blog, November 23, 2013
Graduated Driver Licensing Programs Improve Teen Driver Safety, North Carolina Car Accident Lawyers Blog, November 21, 2013