Tucson is teaming up with a number of other Arizona jurisdictions on a proposal that seeks to prohibit drivers from using cellphones while driving unless the driver is using a hands-free accessory.
Hands-Free Only Cellphone Use
The measure, which is still in draft phase, would be stricter than existing prohibitions such as Tucson’s already existing ban on texting while driving and the state’s current distracted-driving law.
The proposed plan would allow law enforcement to pull over a driver just for using a cellphone while driving, essentially making the act a primary offense, versus a secondary offense that a person can be charged for if they are pulled over for another infraction, such as failing to stop at a stop sign. Under the proposal, using a cellphone without a hands-free accessory would be classified as a driving infraction.
The county’s current texting-while-driving ban is a primary offense, which means an officer is able to pull a person over specifically if they are seen texting.
According to data collected by ADOT, in 2015, distracted driving contributed to at least 33 fatal crashes and nearly 8,000 distracted drivers were involved in crashes on Arizona roadways.
The following are all forms of distracted driving:
- Using a cell phone or smartphone
- Eating and drinking
- Talking to passengers
- Reading, including maps
- Using a navigation system
- Watching a video
- Adjusting a radio, CD player, or MP3 player
If you have been involved in an accident as the result of distracted driving, there are a number of things you’ll need to do.
What Not to Do After a Car Accident
Here’s a list of things to NOT do after a car accident:
- Leave the scene. You are legally required to stop, check on the other person and car involved, exchange all insurance and contact information and report it to law enforcement. Failure to do so means you’ve committed a crime.
- Forget to call 911. Even if the car accident seems minor, if you don’t get an official police report that documents the accident, what proof do you have? Sometimes law enforcement might not respond to collision unless there are injuries, but you always have an opportunity to get a report of the accident. This can help in the claim process, as well as protect you.
- Lose your cool. Try to remain as calm as possible and be polite.
- Admit fault. Do not admit to anything. But doing so, you’re legally admitting liability for the accident. This can expose you to lawsuits or other penalties.
- Forget proper documentation. Documenting any damage done to cars or the scene will provide you with any necessary evidence should the accident lead to a lawsuit. Try to take a few minutes to write down what happened from your point of view. Note time, date, streets, makes models and colors of cars, direction you were heading, contact information, and information from any witnesses that were at the scene. This will all help to build your case and help determine liability.
Working with a Personal Injury Attorney
If you have been involved in an automobile accident, you should immediately call a personal injury attorney that can help you build your case. They have the experience necessary to ensure you are able to prove your injuries so that you can collect the compensation you are owed.