NEW YORK, NEW YORK – Starting February 16, 2011, New York State is increasing the penalty for using a cell phone while driving, an initiative supported by New York personal injury lawyer David Perecman. There will be two driver penalty points, in addition to the fine of $100 for violations of the cell phone law.
“This could mean more fines and court appearances for drivers who refuse to stop talking on a cell phone while driving, or texting while driving in New York, and the hope is that drivers will think harder before they use a cell phone or text while driving in New York,” personal injury lawyer Perecman said.
The New York state DMV automatically suspends a person’s driver’s license if he accumulates eleven points during an 18-month period. These new penalties can also affect auto insurance rates.
“People really need to consider the importance of a call given the potential consequences to talking on the phone while driving in New York,” personal injury lawyer Perecman added.
Previously, only drivers who have been found guilty of texting while driving had points added to their license.
“New York now has one of the nation’s toughest ban on drivers who talk or a cell phone or text while driving,” said New York personal injury lawyer Perecman. “This is good. We want to bring the number of auto accident injuries down.”
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), distracted driving plays a part in one in five vehicle crashes. In a September 2010 report released by the NHTSA, in 2009 there was a reported 5,474 people killed by distracted drivers and 448,000 injured in vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers. Approximately 995 of those people were considered to have been killed by drivers using cell phones.
In New York there were 342,564 tickets issued for cell phone violations in 2009, reports the DMV.
The new law affects all drivers on New York roads.
“Distracted driving is a serious problem in New York,” personal injury lawyer Perecman said. “It is a dangerous practice that costs people their lives and loved ones. Many studies show distracted driving and wrongful death are closely linked.”
If a person texting or talking on a cell phone while driving in New York injures you or kills a loved one, you need an experienced New York personal injury attorney.
“People think they can pay the right amount of attention to driving while talking on a cell phone or texting, but even with a hands-free device, their brains are divided between the road and the conversation,” added Perecman, a New York personal injury lawyer for over 30 years.