Toledo, OH LawFuel.com – April 24, 2012
Toledo car accident lawyer Michael D. Bell today called for Ohio lawmakers to approve House Bill 99, which would prohibit text messaging while driving.
“The dangers of texting while driving have become increasingly clear as more and more innocent people have been injured in car accidents blamed on distracted driving,” said Bell, Senior Associate in the personal injury section of Toledo’s Gallon, Takacs, Boissoneault & Schaffer Co., L.P.A.
“A ban on texting while driving would send a clear message and ultimately save lives,” Bell said. “It would be appropriate for Ohio to pass this law before the end of April, which is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month.”
The Ohio State Highway Patrol said this month that 31,231 car crashes in the state from 2009 to 2011 were caused by distracted driving. Among these accidents, 74 auto wrecks were fatal, and 7,825 more resulted in injuries.
Distracted driving is any non-driving activity a person engages in that has potential to distract him or her from the primary task of driving. Using a cell phone, including reading, writing or sending text messages, was involved in 18 percent of distracted driving fatalities nationwide in 2009, according to the most recent stats from the National Highway Safety Administration.
The bill under consideration by the Ohio General Assembly would forbid “using an electronic wireless communications device to write, send, or read a text-based communication” while operating a motor vehicle on a public road. The bill allows texting in a parked car or in an emergency.
Ohio is currently one of six states without limits on texting while driving or cell phone use behind the wheel, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).
The National Safety Council (NSC) promotes April as Distracted Driving Awareness Month.
“It’s time to start changing the social acceptance of cell phone use while driving,” NSC president and CEO Janet Froetscher said in a recent news release.
Bell said regardless of the General Assembly’s actions, his Toledo personal injury firm will continue to stand for traffic safety and the rights of those harmed by negligent and reckless drivers, including distracted drivers.
The firm, which handles personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits for car accident victims, has recovered millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements on behalf of injured clients in Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan.
“People deserve to be made whole if they are injured because a driver will not put down a cell phone or because a driver engages in some other kind of reckless behavior,” Bell said. “Anyone hurt in an automobile accident blamed on distracted driving should get legal help to hold the distracted driver accountable for their negligence and carelessness.”
About Gallon, Takacs, Boissoneault & Schaffer Co., L.P.A.
Gallon, Takacs, Boissoneault & Schaffer Co., L.P.A., is a full service Toledo law firm that represents working men and women, individuals with disabilities and labor unions throughout Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan, including the communities of Toledo, Findlay, Bowling Green, Northwood, Oregon, Perrysburg, Sylvania, Lima, Defiance, Fremont, Sandusky and Waterville. In addition to a general practice, the firm assists clients in personal injury, workers’ compensation, Social Security disability, labor and bankruptcy cases. The firm’s personal injury areas include construction injuries, car accidents, motorcycle accidents, truck accidents, slip-and-falls, farming injuries, defective products, medical malpractice and nursing home injuries. For more information, call Gallon, Takacs, Boissoneault & Schaffer Co., L.P.A. at (800) 352-1976 or use its online form.