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Despite the known dangers, drivers in New York State continue to drive while distracted

Residents throughout New York State lead hectic lives and often have important personal and professional responsibilities that need immediate and ongoing attention. Many busy parents and professionals religiously rely upon their smartphones to schedule events, text, email, conduct research and make calls.

According to a 2015 Gallup Poll, 81 percent of smartphone users keep their phone within arm’s reach throughout the day and 41 percent admit to checking their phone "a few times an hour," while 11 percent say they check their phone "every few minutes." Given the frequently with which many people check and engage with their phones, it's not surprising that many have a hard time disconnecting from their phones while driving.

Numerous studies have focused on the dangers of using a cellphone or smartphone while driving. During 2013 alone, reports that more than 3,100 people in the U.S. lost their lives in traffic accidents linked to distracted driving. In reality, this number is likely even higher as many at-fault drivers likely won't admit to talking on a cellphone or checking their email prior to a crash.

In an effort to prevent drivers from texting and using a handheld cellphone while driving, New York is among the states that bans drivers from texting and using handheld cellphones. Drivers who violate these laws may, depending on the number of violations, face fines from $50 to $450. However, despite these laws and compelling evidence about the dangers of texting and talking on a cellphone while driving, many drivers continue to regularly do so.

Individuals who have been injured in a traffic accident caused by a distracted driver may choose to discuss their case with an attorney. An attorney will thoroughly investigate the factors that may have contributed to a crash and work to recover compensation to help account for expenses associated with an individual’s medical treatments, lost wages and disability.

Source:, "Facts and Statistics," Jan. 12, 2016

New York State, "Cellphone use & texting," Jan. 12, 2016

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