Craig P. Tiller, Esq. PLLC

Police: Distracted drivers exist, despite few texting charges

For those driving in the Lynchburg, Virginia, area, road safety should always be a top priority. Something as simple as a distracted driver can cause a car accident that leads to serious injury and even death. Texting and driving is one distraction that's been in the local and national news. As of July 2013, texting and driving is classified as a primary offense in Virginia. That means police officers can pull drivers over for texting even if there are no other violations present.

A traffic safety officer in Roanoke said that his primary goal is to keep people safe on the road. Spreading awareness about the dangers of texting and driving is one way to do that, and ticketing those who don't comply with the law is another. The officer reports that the total number of individuals ticketed in the first months of the law is low compared with the number of people police believe are texting and driving.

In all of Virginia, there were 725 convictions for texting and driving citations. Roanoke City accounted for 17 convictions, which was the highest in the area. Roanoke County reported 12 convictions. Lynchburg City reported five convictions, as did Montgomery County.

The traffic safety office said that it's difficult for police to catch drivers texting. When a police car is spied, drivers are on their best behavior. That usually includes stashing the phone, or at least, not typing a text.

Still, texting and driving remains a serious risk on the road. According to a national study, over 330,000 injuries annually are related to texting and driving accidents. If you or someone you know is injured in such an accident, then you may have the basis for a compensation claim. When someone is distracted by texting, they could be held negligent in an accident.

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