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Why Snapchat and Driving Don’t Mix

By Lependorf & Silverstein on January 20, 2017

snapchatEvery year, distracted driving becomes more and more of a problem on New Jersey roadways. With the continued advancements in mobile technology, and with the increasing popularity of social media and communication apps like Snapchat, the temptations to look at your cell phone while driving become ever greater, whether it’s to take a photo, send or receive a message, or even record a video.

In 2014 alone, over 3,000 fatalities were recorded, and 431,000 people were injured in motor vehicle accidents as a result of distracted drivers. State laws have been passed across the country forbidding the use of cell phones while operating a motor vehicle, yet people continue to send text messages and check their social media accounts while driving. This poses a serious risk to the drivers themselves and everyone who is sharing the road with them.

The list of activities that can lead to distracted driving include the following:

  • Texting
  • Talking on the phone
  • Operating a smartphone
  • Eating and drinking
  • Talking to passengers
  • Grooming
  • Reading, including maps
  • Using a navigation system
  • Watching a video
  • Adjusting a radio, CD player, or MP3 player

While it may be common for drivers to do many of the above activities, it only takes a few seconds of inattention for tragedy to strike. And statistics indicate that young drivers are especially prone to driving while distracted. The age group of 15 to 19-year-olds had the largest proportion of drivers who were reported as distracted at the time of an accident. Meanwhile, drivers in their 20s accounted for 23 percent of drivers in all fatal crashes, but made up 27 percent of the distracted drivers and 38 percent of the distracted drivers who were using cell phones in fatal crashes.

New Jersey has very strict laws when it comes to distracted driving, including a handheld ban for drivers of all ages, meaning you aren’t allowed to hold a cell phone while driving. Moreover, state law forbids all cell phone use, whether handheld or hands-free, for novice drivers, and bans texting for drivers of all ages.

If you or a loved one have been the victim of a distracted driver, it could be difficult to prove in a court of law despite the strict regulations. It will likely be necessary to obtain evidence that corroborates that the driver was using his or her mobile device while driving. This might include cell phone records, eyewitness testimony, traffic surveillance photos, or access to the driver’s social media accounts.

The experienced Princeton legal team at Lependorf & Silverstein, P.C. has the experience and expertise necessary to help you receive the best possible outcome for your distracted driving injury lawsuit. Contact us today at (609) 240-0040 to schedule a free consultation and learn how you can gain the compensation you deserve.

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