Ralph A. Schwartz, P.C.

Cell phone companies dial up new approach to distracted driving

Each state has its own ways of dealing with the problem of cell phone use while driving. Nevada is one of 10 states that bans all hand-held use of a cell phone while operating a motor vehicle. That means Nevada residents who have been injured by a distracted driver using a cell phone will have an easier time proving negligence in any ensuing civil lawsuit.

It appears that more states are gradually catching on to the dangers associated with distracted driving, as a total of 39 states and the District of Columbia implement some sort of limitation on driving and using a cell phone. And readers in Las Vegas may be surprised to hear that cell phone companies have actually joined the fight against negligent and distracted driving.

The "It Can Wait" campaign is set to be launched this summer by 200 organizations along with four major cell phone companies: AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon Wireless and Sprint. Those businesses initally opposed state laws limiting cell phone use, but the companies have since dialed up a different approach.

As was the case with the alcohol industry, public outcry and sheer statistics pointed to a staggering number injurious traffic accidents resulting from overuse of a potentially dangerous product. This time, though, it was cell phones.

"It Can Wait" efforts will focus mainly on younger motorists, who have been shown to be particularly susceptible to distracted driving. Nevada residents can also look forward to a television and radio ad campaign, as well as messages on blimps reminding drivers not to text, talk or use apps on their cell phones.

To learn more about their rights after an auto accident, injured parties in Las Vegas and Henderson would do well to meet with an attorney with experience in securing compensation for damages.

Source: Oregon Live, "Cellphone companies will launch campaign against texting while driving," May 14, 2013

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