Rely on

Louisiana’ premier
personal injury lawyer

Request Your Free Consultation

Distracted Teen Driving Puts Lives of First Responders at Risk

Posted in Our Blog on November 24, 2019

Accidents caused by distracted teen drivers in New Orleans are a regular occurrence in live traffic. While many involve other passenger vehicles, emergency and first responders are being affected by young drivers distracted by smartphones, friends, and multi-tasking behind the wheel. Parents try to instill the value that distracted driving is not okay, but they are unable to control what their children do when left to their own devices.

If you sustained injuries in an accident related to distracted driving, you should discuss your options with a New Orleans car accident lawyer at the Law Office of John R. Redmann, LLC. We can provide valuable insight regarding your ability to collect financial compensation. Request a free consultation with our legal team today by calling (504) 500-5000 or submitting a message through our contact form.

The Statistics Are Sobering

The Centers for Disease Control and Preventions cites that more than 1,000 drivers are injured every day by distracted drivers. Distracted driving also costs people their lives as well. The same source attributes 9 deaths every day attributed to distracted-driving cases.

Young drivers pose the most significant risk behind the wheel, not only to others but to themselves as well. Half of American high school students admit to texting or email behind the wheel. According to the Youth Risk Behavior Study, it discovered that teens who are willing to take these actions are also more likely to drive as or with an intoxicated driver than compared to those who do not.

First Responders Are Significantly Impacted

In addition to general driving information, the statistics of cases involving emergency response vehicles, like police cars, fire trucks, and ambulances, are shocking:

  • Cell phone use in New Orleans is more frequent than in any other city in the country
  • 611 car accidents in New Orleans were the result of distracted driving
  • 19 percent of drivers believe their distracted driving has put first responders at risk
  • 24 percent are not aware of how to respond when they see emergency responders in the roadway.

What we are seeing from these statistics is that even experienced drivers are: a) frequently distracted, and b) unsure of what to do when seeing emergency vehicles in the roadway. Imagine the impact it has on your teen when he or she is behind the wheel.

Types of Distracted Driving

No matter how often you remind your team to not engage in distracted driving, the message must be internalized by the recipient. There are multiple forms of distracted driving by teens that are common among all cases that cause them to pull their attention from the roadway. They include:

  • Manual distractions: Manual distractions are the occurrence of anything that takes your teen’s hands away from the wheel. Answering phone calls, playing music, smoking, and grooming are just a few examples of manual distractions.
  • Visual distractions: Visual distractions are the instances that cause your child to take his or her eyes off of the road. Billboards, damaged windshields, adjusting cabin temperate, and precipitation are typical examples of visual distractions.
  • Cognitive distractions: Cognitive distractions occur when your teen driver takes his or her mental focus away from the task of driving safely. Arguments, daydreaming, and talking on the phone are all instances that can cause your child to not pay attention to the task at hand.

While the preceding list is not exhaustive, it gives you an idea of the rigors and demands that driving places on developing minds. As adults, we struggle with the concept already, which means that the emphasis on safety and awareness is essential to the security of your child and other drivers on the roadway.

Consequences for Distracted Driving in Louisiana

Not only does distracted driving impact injured drivers physically and mentally, but there are also legal consequences that your child may face after a distracted driving accident. Louisiana has a cell phone use ban in place that prevents drivers of any age from engaging in the following activities:

  • Sending or receiving text communications
  • Posting to or reading social media content
  • Talking on the phone in school zones during posted hours

There are a few exceptions to this rule, but they are primarily reserved for first responders or on devices that do not require the human-side operation to benefit from their use. Teen and adult drivers are permitted to reasonably use their phones when driving to report criminal activity or emergency situations.

Drivers found guilty of distracted driving face up to $500 in penalties for a first-time offense, and up to $1,000 in penalties for a second offense. Instances of distracted driving involving a motor vehicle accident can result in increased fines.

We Handle Distracted Driver Claims in New Orleans

If you sustained injuries at the hand of a distracted driver, you might want to discuss your options with a New Orleans car accident lawyer to explore your options. Schedule a free consultation with the Law Offices of John R. Redmann, LLC, by calling (504) 500-5000 or sending a request through our contact form.