By now, most California drivers are aware of the heightened safety risks associated with cell phone use behind the wheel. Vehicular talking and texting is a practice forbidden by law and condemned by safety advocates; yet now, a new study claims to find – get this – no statistical link between cell phone use and auto accidents on California roads. Talk about mixed messages.
Cell-phone related accidents: a mere coincidence?
Published in December of 2010, the study in question – “Driving under the (Cellular) Influence” – combined car accident data and information accumulated from over 477,000 California call records during peak usage hours to further explore the connection between distracted driving and injury car accidents. Believe it or not, the study results revealed no correlation between prime calling times and auto accident rates – a finding that even the project’s administrators described as “counterintuitive.”
However, the administrators also note that, despite the 125 studies conducted in recent years to track the impact of cell phone use behind the wheel, no findings thus far have revealed causal evidence linking cell phone use directly with crashes on the road.
Of course, even more provocative than the statistical findings shown in this study are the researchers’ proposed explanations – including a theory suggesting that increased care and caution exercised by drivers who persist in using cell phones may compensate for the risky distraction factor and actually improve the driver’s overall safety on the road.
Don’t leave safety to chance
The findings, while provocative and intriguing, stand in stark contrast to the countless cell-phone-related road fatalities and injury car accidents on record to date. And while some conscientious drivers may indeed exercise extra care and alertness while using a phone on the road, they’re most likely an exception to the rule.
As responsible and safety-conscious San Diego drivers, let’s not leave safety to chance. After all, statistics won’t matter one bit when it comes down to making a hairpin turn or split-second stop that could save a life: and if there’s a cell phone in your hand at that crucial moment, you’ll be less able to function quickly and effectively to avoid an accident. Opt instead to put safety first — and save your phone calls and texting frenzies for the safety of your (stationary) couch or office.
We all strive to do our part to keep our community safe; but sometimes, injury accidents are beyond our control.
About the Law Offices of Michael Pines, APC
If you have been injured in a distracted driving accident, contact the Law Offices of Michael Pines today for a free and confidential consultation. Our seasoned personal injury attorneys have your best interests at heart, and can help you navigate the daunting world of accident compensation with ease and expert care.