Texting While Driving In North Carolina. What’s The Problem?

Texting and DrivingSimply put, it is against the law in North Carolina for anyone to text or read a text message while a vehicle is in motion. It can be expensive for you if you are caught texting while driving.  A driver that is caught texting or reading a text message while driving will face a fine of $100.00 plus court fees of at least $130.00—that’s a very expensive text message to send or read! However, the violation will not add points to your driving record nor will you be assessed an insurance surcharge.

More importantly, using a cell phone while driving puts your safety, and the safety of others at risk. The National Safety Council has reported that every 30 seconds in the US there is an automobile crash involving drivers using cell phones and texting.  Using a cell phone while driving makes it four times a likely that you will crash—this includes using hand held or hands free devices. In fact, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration driving a vehicle while texting is more dangerous than driving while drunk.

Texting while driving can also increase your chances of being held liable for causing an accident in North Carolina. Distracted driving is evidence of negligence in North Carolina. Distracted driving is any activity that could divert a person’s attention away from the primary task of driving which consequently endanger the driver, any passengers, other drivers and pedestrians. These types of distractions include:

  • Texting;
  • Using a cell phone or smartphone;
  • Eating and drinking;
  • Talking to passengers;
  • Grooming;
  • Reading, including maps;
  • Using a navigation system;
  • Watching a video; and
  • Adjusting a radio, CD player, or MP3 player.

By far the most alarming distraction listed above is texting because the act of texting requires visual, manual and cognitive attention from the driver that draws the driver’s attention away from safe driving. The average time a driver takes his or her eyes off the road while texting is 5 seconds which is the equivalent of driving blindfolded the length of a football field!  The US Department of Transportation sponsors a site that focuses on bringing to light the distractions on the road with the hope that people stop putting themselves and others in danger.

If you decide not to text while driving, you will decrease the likelihood that you will cause an accident, thus avoiding the potential consequences of an automobile accident including: property damage to your automobile, fines for texting while driving, liability in a personal injury action,  and physical injury to yourself and others involved in the accident.

If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of an auto accident call us today at 704-333-0885. Our experienced personal injury attorneys are here to help you through these often difficult times. With offices in Charlotte, Gastonia, Hickory and Rock Hill, SC you’re just a short distance away from getting the help you deserve.

Written by Lisa Crotty, Associate Attorney, Campbell & Associates, Attorneys at Law