Cagle Law Firm
Attorney Zane Cagle

Posted on May 16th, 2016,
by Zane Cagle

Car Technology – Core of Safety is Still Personal Responsibility

Posted on May 16th, 2016 by Zane Cagle

I drive a lot of miles in a week, thus I found myself listening to a radio show and the discussion topic was distracted driving.  What a better place to raise awareness of distracted driving than through radio?!!

Commentary on Distracted Driving

The radio show was hosted by a New York deejay and he had numerous experts including a research scientist from Virginia Tech Transportation Institute and a co-founder of the Distracted Operators Risk Causalities. After almost an hour of discussion between experts and callers, the following statements were agreed upon by all.

  • In our modern age, most of us suffer from digital addiction.  We are fearful we may miss that life-changing call or text if we disengage for moments.
  • Technology has not yet bridged the gap between phone usage and safety technology on our vehicles
  • Responsibility for safe driving still lies with the operators

 

Drivers Need to Focus on Getting from A to B Safely—Not Feed Their Digital Addictions

Los Angeles Times printed an article in January talking about how Ford and Fiat Chrysler had recently offered technology that “allows customers to bring their smartphone technology they’re comfortable with into the vehicle and use it without hassle” according to Don Butler of Ford.  However, as pointed out by AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety fiddling with an in-car infotainment system can leave a driver distracted for as long as 27 seconds.

According to the study, even voice controlled systems can cause drivers to take their mind off the road for an alarmingly long period of time. President Peter Kissinger said, ” The results indicate that motorists could miss stop signs, pedestrians and other vehicles while the mind is readjusting to the task of driving”

Experts indicate that we are definitely not close to driverless cars and equipping cars to make constant digital communication available is like equipping cars with mini bars or television sets.

Personal Driver Responsibility Still at the Core of Safety

Ultimately, no matter the safety features offered on a new vehicle, the driver has to take personal responsibility for paying attention.

Carmakers may be rolling out new cars that make technology available for the constant interaction customers are jonesing for, but is that really responsible? How “plugged in” should we be?  The safest feature of our smartphones and car technology is the audio directions. No one can argue that listening to directions is far safer than the old days of reading an actual map. But what else should we be doing while we are driving?

Without a doubt, inattentiveness is the number one cause of motor vehicle accidents, however, we could argue that distracted driving is far more negligent because it involves a personal choice to do something other than concentrate on the road before you.

If You’ve Been Involved in a Motor Vehicle Accident

If you’ve been injured in a motor vehicle crash, you will need legal representation.  Specifically, you may not know if the driver who hit you was actually engaging in distracted driving but no matter why the other driver cause the accident, the injury is still an injury.  Often, through investigations, we can find factors that caused or contributed to the cause of the crash.

If you’ve been hurt, negotiating with the insurance company is a whole other problem and consulting an experienced personal injury attorney should be on your “To Do List” right away.