Over the past several years, the dangers of distracted driving have become more and more well-known. Perhaps this is because almost every person nowadays owns a smart phone, and there is more data to be collected on the safety risks posed by using those devices behind the wheel. In 2021 alone, distracted driving claimed the lives of 3,522 people on our roadways.
To prevent crashes and protect people on the road, many states, including Wisconsin, have made it illegal to drive while composing or sending emails or texting on a cell phone. However, the Wisconsin statute on inattentive driving carves out an exception if the driver is using a voice-operated or hands-free device.
Talking on a cell phone while driving can involve multiple different types of distraction. A driver may take their eyes off the road while making a call and will likely need to hold the phone in their hand while talking, making it impossible for the driver to have both hands on the wheel. It is also not unexpected that the driver will be thinking about their conversation and paying less attention to the road than they should be. Since hands-free calls (or voice texting) reduce the need to physically hold a phone or divert your eyes from the road ahead, there is an assumption they are somehow safe. However, even a driver using a hands-free or voice operated device can be distracted.
Many people think that they can multi-task and complete two or more activities at the same time. We all give ourselves too much credit. According to the National Safety Council, “even when talking hands-free, drivers can miss seeing up to half of what's around them because they are engaged in a cell phone conversation.”
If you were injured by a distracted driver, contact one of the attorneys at Weiss Law Office, S.C. today at (262) 240-9663 to discuss how your claims can be presented to maximize your right to recover.
We have offices in Appleton and Milwaukee to best serve injured victims in Wisconsin.
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