The Washington State law banning the use of cell phones while driving without using a blue tooth or hands-free device went into effect July 1st. According to a report in The Seattle Times, a little more than six months later, many drivers are ignoring the ban. Currently cell phone usage is a “secondary offense” meaning that police can only give you a ticket if they catch you doing something else wrong.
Police are enforcing the ban: the Washington State Patrol has issued 746 tickets for illegal cell phone use and they have also given 1,345 written and verbal warnings. Here in Seattle, 247 tickets have been written.
Even though the ban is being enforced, many motorists mostly just ignore the law. I was walking around town after a snow storm and saw half a dozen motorists with their phone to their ear even though road conditions were icy and driving was treacherous.
Some motorists, however, have taken heed of the law and the State Patrol says that car accidents are down 11% since the ban. Although the State Patrol admit that this decrease might also be attributed to motorists driving less when gas prices spiked.
If you have been involved in a car accident and you believe it was caused by the other driver using a cell phone, be sure to ask the police officer to check the person’s cell phone for the their number and the times of the last calls made. After you have been treated for your injuries, contact a personal injury attorney who may ask the court to preserve the cell phone records of the motorist whose negligence caused your accident.
This information was brought to you by Washington Injury Attorney, a service of The Farber Law Group. We represent people who have been injured in car accidents due to another driver’s negligence. If you have serious injuries or severe whiplash, you are going to want to contact an experienced lawyer.
Call us today for a free case evaluation.
For more information read, What if my accident was caused by someone using a cell phone?