A 16-year-old was struck and killed recently as he was walking on a sidewalk along a busy street in Queens. The New York Post reported that the teen was hit by a minivan whose driver told police that he lost control when he reached for a dropped milk carton.
Distracted driving has been a modern-day nightmare on America’s streets, causing thousands of injuries and deaths each year. According to Distraction.gov, the federal government website on distracted driving, 387,000 people were injured and 3,331 people were killed in 2011 because of distracted drivers. In 2010, 18 percent of injury crashes were linked to distracted driving.
If you or a family member has been injured by a distracted driver in New York City, find out your options by talking to a trained New York City distracted driving accident attorney at David Resnick & Associates, P.C.
Distraction.gov lists the following activities that “divert a person’s attention away from the primary task of driving” and “endanger driver, passenger, and bystander safety:”
- Using a cellphone or smartphone
- Eating and drinking
- Talking to passengers
- Reading, including maps
- Using a navigation system
- Watching a video
- Adjusting a radio, CD player or MP3 player
Of these, texting is considered “by far the most alarming distraction.”
As of February 2011, drivers caught using a cellphone in New York will receive 2 points on their driver’s license, according to the DMV. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, 39 states had statewide bans on texting while driving and 10 imposed statewide bans on cellphone usage while driving as of March 2013. In states with no statewide bans, many localities limit texting and cellphone use by drivers.
Community residents are particularly upset about the death of the teen in Queens because they had been begging the city for years to take measures to make the busy street safer. Regardless of whether such measures could have prevented the accident, it is clear that distracted driving is a threat to public safety.