NSC targets cellphone use in April campaign
Auto showrooms in Massachusetts are packed with vehicles containing all manner of sophisticated electronic equipment. While accident avoidance systems and other electronic safety features may be designed to save lives, equipment that informs or entertains drivers could actually make the nation’s roads more dangerous. The National Safety Council says that most American drivers assume that GPS, audio and communications features are perfectly safe to use while behind the wheel, and the nonprofit organization has decided to spend April trying to correct such misconceptions and remind motorists of the dangers of distracted driving. Cellphone use is the main focus of Distracted Driving Awareness Month, and the NSC wants to drive home the message that a single phone call or text can be a life changing event. Those interested in helping the organization to get the message out can visit the NSC website to download free resources such as posters, videos and infographics. The NSC website also offers employers a free cellphone policy kit. While state and federal lawmakers have been slow to limit the use of mobile electronic devices by drivers, many companies are implementing such bans to protect their employees, guard against litigation and avoid the negative publicity associated with fatal distracted driving accidents. The cellphone kit for companies includes a sample policy and a list of questions that employees will likely ask. In the aftermath of a serious road traffic accident, negligent drivers often blame road conditions or some sort of mechanical defect rather than admit that they acted recklessly. Experienced personal injury attorneys may seek to refute such statements by consulting with accident investigators or having vehicles inspected for defects. When defendants deny that they were using electronic devices while behind the wheel, attorneys may demand that they produce their cellphone records to back up these claims.