According to the most recent Annual Estimate of Cell Phone Crashes published by the National Safety Council in 2015, approximately 27 percent of the auto accidents that occurred in 2013 involved texting or talking on cell phones. That’s a total of 1.1 million auto accidents altogether. While California passed laws to restrict the use of cell phones while driving in 2006, as have many other states, the fact that millions have been injured in car accidents, truck accidents, and other motor vehicle accidents caused by cell phone use since then has shown that these laws have largely been ineffective.
On the other hand, technology has changed significantly since 2006. While the 2006 laws specifically addressed talking and texting while driving, it did not touch upon the many capabilities that modern smartphones have. As a result, California Governor Jerry Brown signed AB 1785 into law in September 2016, and it went into effect on January 1, 2017. This law expressly prohibits drivers from holding a cell phone for any purpose whatsoever, whether for texting, talking, consulting a map, watching a video, using the Internet, or taking a picture.
Unfortunately, thousands of drivers continue to break this new law every day, just as they did in 2006 and have ever since. If you or a member of your family has been seriously injured in an auto accident caused by another driver’s cell phone use, or if you have tragically lost a member of your family to such an accident, personal injury attorney Scott Sumner can help. When it comes to litigating claims involving auto accidents and cell phones, our Walnut Creek, CA personal injury lawyer has the skills, resources, and tenacity to successfully handle any case.
Please don’t hesitate to contact Sumner Law for an evaluation of your auto accident case today.
About California Vehicle Code Section 23123.5
According to California Vehicle Code Section 23123.5, drivers may not hold their cell phones for any purpose, period. They may use their cell phones only if those phones are mounted on their dashboards and are set up for voice activation or hands-free use. They may also use them if their vehicles have systems embedded by the manufacturer that would allow for hands-free use through the vehicle.
The only drivers who are exempt from this law are drivers of emergency vehicles. Anyone found in violation of the law will receive a $20 fine, with fines increasing for each subsequent violation.
Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of serious auto accidents in the United States today. Even drivers who abide by the new California cell phone law may be distracted by the substance of their cell phone conversations, resulting in accidents that might otherwise have been avoided. Whatever the cause of your accident, if negligence was involved, Scott Sumner will fight for your rights.
Arrange for an Evaluation of Your Auto Accident Case Today
We urge you to contact Sumner Law to arrange for an evaluation of your auto accident case today.