As a Renton personal injury attorney, I have my Blackberry synced to my e-mail so I may be able to get in touch with clients etc. even when I’m out and about and I understand the temptation to check e-mails or text messages while driving, but after seeing the devastation that can come from taking your eyes off the road for just a few seconds. When texting while driving, drivers take their eyes off the road for 4 seconds on average- though this may seem insignificant, you travel the length of a football field during this time if you are traveling 60 miles per hour.
Just this last week, on Friday December 3rd a fatal pedestrian accident occurred in Milwaukee which appears to be the result of texting while driving. At roughly 5 pm 53-year-old Linda Lee Zyduck got off the bus and continued to cross the street, using a walker as support. When she reached the right hand, eastbound lane at S. 97th St. and W. National Ave she was struck by a vehicle and killed.
The driver was a 19-year-old Muskego woman who reported that she did not see the pedestrian in the crosswalk. Police said they did not believe alcohol or speed were a factor in the accident, but did state they were investigating whether or not texting may have played a role in the accident. Apparently there were text messages received just minutes before the fatal pedestrian accident and an uncompleted text message was on the 19-year-old’s phone.
This texting while driving accident occurred only two days after Milwaukee’s texting while driving laws were put into effect. If texting while driving proves to be the reason behind this fatal pedestrian accident the driver may be fined up to $400 and face vehicular homicide charges.
Every year thousands of accidents happen because a driver took their eyes off the road for just a few seconds. While you may think reading or sending a text will not affect your driving, reading a text takes your eyes from the road an average of 4 seconds and in these 4 seconds you can travel the length of a football field if you are traveling 60 miles per hour. I urge you to take a stance for safety and not text while driving. Visit Teens Against Distracted Driving (TADD) and take the pledge to not text while driving. No matter your age we will send you a bracelet to remind you of your pledge to make our streets safer.
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