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April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month

texting-driving-teensThe LA car accident attorneys at Ellis Law are staunch supporters of this month’s distracted driving enforcement campaign, which aims to curb the number of needless injuries and deaths caused by motorists who text and drive. Launched on April 1st by U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Fox, the “U Drive. U Text. U Pay.” campaign aims to bolster enforcement and awareness across the country.

Statistics gleaned by The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) show that 3,154 people were killed in accidents caused by distracted drivers in 2013 and another 424,000 motorists were harmed in distraction-related crashes that same year.

Here at Ellis Injury Law, our legal team knows all too well the types of physical, emotional and financial damages such accidents can cause, and we are committed to advocating on behalf of those victimized by distracted drivers in Southern California.

Distracted driving kills thousands every year

Local and state law enforcement officers will be on high alert for distracted drivers, and won’t hesitate to issue tickets to those who are using their cell phones or illegally texting and driving behind the wheel.

“Distracted driving kills, there is no excuse for it, and it must stop,” said Secretary Anthony Foxx in a press release issued April 2. “Across the country, we’re putting distracted drivers on notice: U Drive. U Text. U Pay. Texting and driving will at least cost you the price of a ticket but it could very well cost you your life or someone else’s.”

The campaign will run digital, radio and TV ads through April 16 in both English and Spanish that remind Americans about the fatal consequences of texting behind the wheel and other forms of distracted driving. Those who are ticketed will face stiff financial penalties, in addition to the possibility of license demerit points and jail time.

Of particular concern are teenagers (age 15 to 19) who make up the bulk of our nation’s most distracted drivers. The NHTSA says that at least 10 percent of all teen drivers aged 15 to 19 involved in fatal collisions were distracted at the time of the crash. Not surprisingly, nearly 3,000 teens in this age group were involved in deadly crashes resulting from distracted driving in 2013 and more than 240 adolescents lost their lives in distracted driving crashes.

Distracted driving has become increasingly commonplace in California and across the nation with the prevalence of smart phones and other in-vehicle electronic devices. Legislation banning text messaging while driving has been passed in 45 states as well as the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

In addition to a texting and driving ban, California has also barred handheld cell phone use and the use of hands-free mobile phones in drivers under the age of 18.

Injured? Legal advocates you can count on

Despite persuasive national campaigns, new legislation and myriad programs enacted to stop distracted driving, it still happens with disturbing regularity. If you live in the greater L.A. area and believe your accident injuries were caused by a distracted driver, the attorneys at Ellis Law have the experience and resources to ensure your legal rights are protected. Our firm offers free consultations to prospective clients who want to learn more about their rights to compensation.

We stand ready to fight for fair compensation for you and your family by filing a Los Angeles distracted driving accident lawsuit. Our legal fees for injury cases are handled on a contingent basis, which means we only get paid when you do. Call 1-800-INJURED to arrange a case review today.