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New Jersey officials crack down on distracted driving in April

On Behalf of | Mar 29, 2024 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

Distracted driving remains a leading cause of traffic accidents throughout the nation, including here in New Jersey. The New Jersey Department of Law and Public Safety reports that distracted driving is an “dangerous epidemic” in the state and responsible for hundreds of thousands of crashes and thousands of deaths every single year.

As technology integrates further into our daily lives, the temptation to divert our attention while on the road increases, further increasing the risk of a deadly crash.

What is distracted driving?

When we talk about distracted driving, we refer to any activity that takes your attention away from the task of safe driving. This can include:

  • Texting or using a smartphone,
  • Eating and drinking,
  • Talking to passengers, and
  • Fiddling with the stereo, entertainment, or navigation system.

Any one of these distractions can increase the risk of accidents and injuries.

What are the consequences of distracted driving?

In addition to the dangers of an accident, distracted driving can also result in fines and a license suspension or revocation. Each jurisdiction has specific laws and penalties that address distracted driving. Failing to adhere to these can not only endanger lives but also result in significant legal trouble.

How can we reduce the rate of distracted driving in New Jersey?

The best way to combat distracted driving is through awareness and proactive measures. Make all adjustments before you start driving and set your phone to ‘Do Not Disturb’ mode. For long trips, plan breaks to eat, rest, or make calls.

Targeted enforcement efforts have proven successful in the past. Most notably, the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign helped to curb the rise in drunk driving accidents. In the same spirit, authorities throughout the state are taking part in the U Drive. U Text. U Pay. Campaign, a high-visibility effort that includes messaging and increased police patrols.

The responsibility to avoid a distracted driving accident lies with each driver. In addition to the legal and personal risks that come with distracted driving, a distracted driver can injure others on the road. Those who believe they were injured due to another driver’s negligence have options. This can include a civil suit which can result in funds to help cover the costs that result from the accident, including medical care, vehicle replacement, and missed wages.