Drivers in Riverdale, Langley Park, and Fort Washington should be on the lookout for increased police patrols in the coming weeks. April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month, and as a result, Maryland police officers are trying to catch drivers who are using their cell phones while driving. Officers will not hesitate to pull drivers over if they look like they are not paying full attention to the road while behind the wheel.
For the past week, police have been targeting drivers near the toll facilities in the state. The Maryland Transportation Authority considers distracted driving as “any activity that could divert a person’s attention away from the primary task of driving.” This includes using a handheld cell phone to make a phone call, text, or use any other application.
If police catch you for a first offense, the fine is $83. However, if you are caught for a third time, the fine is $160. Additionally, if a crash occurs, points may be added to your driver’s license. The strictest penalty is imposed when a distracted driver causes a serious or fatal accident ($5,000 fine and up to one year in prison). According to Maryland’s MVA, “Distracted driving is involved in 58 percent of total crashes and half of all fatal crashes statewide.” Studies also show that a driver is three times more likely to be involved in a crash wen reaching for a phone and looking for a number. Texting while driving doubles the likelihood of being in an accident.
Your phone calls and text messages can wait, but your life and the lives of others cannot. Far too many people are killed in accidents every year caused by distracted drivers using cell phones and not paying attention to the road.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a distracted drivingcar, truck, or bus accident or has died as a result of their injury suffered in a Maryland crash, and would like more information, please call us at (301) 854-9000 to schedule an appointment for a free case evaluation at our Silver Spring office or one of our other Maryland offices, or visit us online at: http://www.portnerandshure.com/Auto-Accidents/Car-Accidents/Fatal-Car-Accidents.shtml