Distracted driving is the second leading cause of car crash fatalities in B.C. and one of the most common distractions behind the wheel is a mobile electronic device. Every year more than 60 drivers are killed by distracted drivers on B.C. roads and about 330 are seriously injured. While we can feel pressured to be connected all the time, using your cell phone while driving makes you a danger to yourself and others.
While texting on a communications device is often recognized as the riskiest behavior, distractions such as seeking for preferred music or attending to personal grooming can significantly divert a driver’s attention. Research has also concluded that telephone conversations are much more distracting than in-vehicle conversations – perhaps because passengers can observe the road, provide warning, adjust conversation tone according to traffic conditions, while telephone conversations contain fewer pauses and demand greater cognitive resources.
According to the Canadian Automobile Association:
Cell phones are one of the most common distractions for drivers. Drivers engaged in text messaging on a cellular phone are 23 times more likely to be involved in a crash or near crash event compared with non-distracted drivers. (Virginia Tech Transportation Institute, 2010).
Distracted drivers are 3 times more likely to be in a crash than attentive drivers (Alberta Transportation, 2011)
Penalties for Distracted Driving
Effective June 1, 2016, the fine for a distracted driving violation more than doubled, from $167 to $368. The number of associated penalty points applied to a driver’s record has also increased from 3 to 4 points. On a first infraction, a distracted driver must pay a $175 ICBC Driver Penalty Point premium on top of the $368 fine, for a total of $543 for the first infraction. For a second infraction within a one-year period, not only does the driver have to pay another $368, but the ICBC Driver Penalty Point premium will increase to $520.
Contact a Vancouver Distracted Driving Lawyer
If you have been involved in a collision with a driver who was distracted by texting and driving, talking on the phone or any other activity, it is important to speak to a Vancouver distracted driving lawyer as soon as possible. Contact either Ross McLarty or Murray Wolf for a no obligation 30 minute free consultation. Call the law offices of McLarty Wolf at (604) 688-9542 today or contact us via our online form here.