Federal Summit in Washington DC Studies the Effects of Distracted Driving

By Peter DePaolis

The US Transportation Department held its second summit on distracted driving in as many years to tackle the increasing problems associated with distracted driving. In 2009, distracted drivers killed 5,474 people on America’s roads and injured 448,000. Distracted driving accounts for almost a fifth of all traffic deaths. If distracted driving has harmed you or a loved one, a Washington, D.C. personal injury lawyer can help you hold the driver accountable.

Though traffic deaths overall have been on the decline, deaths associated with distracted driving have risen. In 2005, distracted drivers accounted for ten percent of traffic deaths. The National Highway Safety Administration reports that the greatest number of distracted drivers is those under the age of 20. The distracted driving summit found that the best way to fight distracted driving was with the aggressive enforcement of laws.

A particular focus of law enforcement and transportation officials has been cell phone use. More and more states have outlawed or regulated cell phone use while driving. Washington, D.C. and 30 other states have banned text messaging while driving altogether. Federal authorities proposed guidelines for states that would fine drivers and penalize their driving record if police catch them typing on a handheld device. If cell phone use led to serious injury or death, texting while driving could lead to a felony charge.

If distracted driving led to an accident that seriously injured you or a loved one, contact Paulette Chapman, a Washington, D.C. personal injury attorney, at Koonz, McKenney, Johnson & DePaolis L.L.P.

About the Author
Peter DePaolis joined the firm in 1980 and has since represented a large number of individuals involved in automobile collisions, truck accidents, bus crashes, defective products, and medical malpractice cases. A significant portion of Mr. DePaolis’ practice is devoted to working on behalf of people suffering from asbestosis, mesothelioma, and other asbestos-related cancers. He has led his firm’s fight against the asbestos industry and has recovered over $30 million in damages for asbestos victims and their families.