Click to call 602-307-0808 24/7 Click Here for Free Consultation

Arizona Vehicular Law

Texting While Driving: Distracting and Dangerous

This is a Guest Post from the law firm of Millar Mixon in Atlanta, GA.

 

We’ve all seen the ads directed at preventing accidents caused by distracted driving. We all know that texting is perhaps the most dangerous form of distracted driving. But, you don’t have to look far to find someone in traffic using a phone to tap out messages and send emails.

The risks associated with distracted driving, and texting while driving in particular, are real and involve more than just a potential fender bender.

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, texting while driving increases your risk of having a car accident by 23 percent. The attention it requires to send a text message takes your eyes and your mind away from driving, as you careen down the road with a several-hundred pound weapon at your hands

For example, to combat these accidents and lessen the risks we all take when sharing the roads, lawmakers in Georgia have also made texting while driving punishable under criminal law.

If you are caught texting while driving, you can be hit with a $100 criminal fine. If your distracted driving is reckless enough to be called “reckless driving,” you could go to jail for the offense. A criminal charge like this can tarnish your record and increase insurance rates, not to mention be a point of embarrassment.

In 2010, an estimated 416,000 people were injured in motor vehicle accidents involving a distracted driver. In many of these cases, the injured party was an innocent victim, someone who wasn’t texting, talking on the phone, or being otherwise distracted, but was hurt when someone else was being less than safe.

In these cases, the injured party — who may have spent time in the hospital, undergone surgery, or endured long-term physical therapy — is forced to live with the effects of someone else’s poor judgment.

Fortunately for such a car accident victim, there are legal options.

An injured car accident victim may be entitled to recovery through civil laws. This means the person who caused the accident, through their insurance company, can be held financially responsible for the consequences of the accident, including the cost of medical bills, surgeries and time missed from work as well as compensation for pain and suffering.

All in all, the potential criminal and civil penalties that go along with texting and driving, and distracted driving in general, aren’t worth sending off that one last message. And for those of us who do mind the laws of the state, practicing safe driving procedures every time we are behind the wheel, we can rest assured that the laws are designed to protect us and keep us safe.

The Atlanta area personal injury attorneys of Millar & Mixon, LLC. are dedicated to seeking justice for the victims of area motor vehicle accidents. If you’ve been injured in an accident, contact them to discuss your legal options today. 

Red Light Cameras- More Harm than Good?

Red Light Cameras- More Harm than Good?

Photo of a Stoplight

Image Credit James Bowe

If you have ever driven up and down North Scottsdale Road, you know how many red-light cameras there are. The obvious reason for them is to make the roads safer by discouraging drivers from running red-lights. However, recent studies have shown that these cameras may do more harm than good. The reason most of us would think of is that we are so frightened of getting a ticket that we slam on our brakes when we see a yellow instead of traveling through the intersection, and endangering the cars behind us.

However, one reason most people are not aware of is that the contracts between the city and private companies who operate these cameras actually encourage the city to maintain unsafe intersections. Many of these contracts grant the red-light camera provider with a percentage of the money paid on the ticket. Thus, these companies want more money so often times build into their contracts a provision requiring the city to write a minimum number of tickets each year to drivers, or else pay the company a fine. Thus, the cities have an incentive to create shorter yellow-lights, and a disincentive to change the intersection to prevent less red-light running. One can only wonder where the money from our red-light tickets is going…

New Arizona Photo Radar Bill HB 2085 Requires Officer to issue ticket

David M Cantor, Arizona Criminal Lawyer, discusses House Bill 2076 and House Bill 2085 (the new Arizona photo radar bill) were prefiled on January 8, 2010 to be heard at the 2010 49th Legislature Second Regular Session.  If passed, HB 2085 would require that a photo radar ticket actually be issued by a law enforcement officer, and not by mail or a process server.  Currently, if you simply ignore a photo radar ticket received in the mail nothing will happen to you.  However, if a process server claims to have served you or a member of your household, you then must show up to court.  Many process servers are unscrupulous and will simply leave the ticket on your front door and claim that service was accepted.  This new House Bill would actually be a good thing for the people of Arizona.

HB 2076, if passed, would allow an officer to issue a ticket to a person who is smoking in a car if there are any other people in the car who are under 16 years of age.  The ticket would carry a $50.00 fine for each person who is under 16.  The one limitation attached to this House Bill is that the officer cannot pull somebody over purely because they are smoking with a young child in their car.  He must have reasonable suspicion that an additional traffic violation has occurred prior to initiating his stop.  Apparently if you are 16 or 17 (i.e., unable to drink, vote, or legally have sex) you are not protected by the law from second-hand smoke.

To learn more about Arizona photo radar laws, contact The Law Offices of David Michael Cantor.

Click Here for Free ConsultationComparison Questions to Ask when Hiring a Lawyer