It is well known that distracted driving is unsafe and can result in car accidents, injuries and harm to victims. Washington has strict distracted driving laws that drivers should follow or may risk liability to victims they harm with their negligence and carelessness.
Washington distracted driving laws
Hand-held use of a cell phone is prohibited while driving in Washington State. This includes:
- Hand-held use of a phone while stopped in traffic or at a traffic light;
- Typing text or other messaging or accessing the internet or other information on the phone; and
- Watching videos or using cameras while driving
Drivers who are driving under the influence of electronics can receive an E-DUI and fine. The fines can increase with the number of tickets a driver receives.
Risks of distracted driving
Of distracted drivers, 71% engage in the most dangerous form of distraction which includes use of a cell phone behind the wheel of a car. In addition, one in four car accidents involves the use of a cell phone just prior to the car accident taking place. In the state of Washington, fatalities associated with fatal distracted-driving related accidents increase 32% from 2014 to 2015.
The dangers association with distracted driving are well known. The most dangerous form of distracted driving is texting while driving because it involves behavior that removes the drivers eye’s from the roadway, attention from the roadway and hands from the steering wheel.
In addition to the tickets and fines distracted drivers may face in the state of Washington, if they are responsible for a distracted-driving related accident, they may be considered negligent and face liability for the damages the victims suffer. Victims should be familiar with these protections if they are injured by a distracted driver in the state of Washington.