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How to prevent car accidents/injuries due to cell phone use in PA & NJ


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2/5/2012
Louisa T. Chen
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The Teen Driving Summit-How We Can Prevent Car Accidents Due to Cell Phone Use

Since we started the Teen Driving Safety Summit in October of 2010, we have presented at various schools: Wissahickon High School, Chestnut Hill Academy, Springside Academy, Plymouth Whitemarsh High School, Perkiomen High School, Jenkintown High School, and Germantown Academy.  We have talked to over 3,500 high school students. 
I find it interesting that when I talk to adults or school administrators about the program, I often hear “yes, teens are always texting on the phone.”  This is not surprising because adults constantly see teens texting friends in their daily lives, but this is not true.  There is a myth that teenagers and young drivers are the ones texting while driving and causing accidents, but the adults are just as culpable.  In fact, statistics show that adults actually text and drive more often than teen drivers.  When I present at schools, I always ask the teens if they have seen their mothers or fathers texting while driving, and almost 90% of the hands are raised in the room.


Pennsylvania Law on Cell Phone Use and Car Accidents

Under Pennsylvania law, drivers who use cell phones and cause accidents are at risk of being sued for multiple types of claims:

  • negligence
  • negligent infliction of emotional distress
  • loss of consortium
  • punitive damages

To read about these types of claims, access our free legal article:  Car Accidents Due to Cell Phone Use-What Types of Claims an Injured Party Can Make in Pennsylvania or New Jersey.

Parents should be interested to know that recent Pennsylvania courts have upheld additional types of claims in cases where cell phone use caused a car accident.  For instance, punitive damages which are meant to punish outrageous behavior are allowed.  Also, parents who entrust their cars to children who are known to text and drive or otherwise be irresponsible drivers can be sued for negligent entrustment if their child texts and drives, causing a car accident. 

As parents and role models, we have to stop the behavior ourselves.  We can’t tell our kids or teens texting and driving is dangerous or it will cause serious car accidents when we are the biggest offenders. Our kids watch our every move.  They are not going to stop texting while driving if they see you doing it every day.  Before you start the car next time, put the phone in the glove compartment.  No text is worth putting people’s lives in danger and causing serious car accidents and injuries or death.

Help After Being Injured in a Texting While Driving Accident

If you have been seriously injured in a car accident because of cell phone use or texting while driving in PA or NJ, contact our experienced PA and NJ personal injury lawyers at White and Williams.  1-877-944-8396. We will provide a free, no obligation consultation on your case.



Category: Car and Truck Accidents


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