Just the other day, I learned about a phone application (“app”) called Waze. Waze is an app that is quickly attracting new users to join. Essentially, it’s an app that a phone user can download that enables them to check the roadways for various things, such as traffic jams, car accidents, and other road hazards. The phone’s internal GPS connects the person’s phone to other users on a map. This allows the person using the app to view other comments that users post. For example, if someone is stuck in traffic due to a car accident, they will report their observation which in turn allows other users to view and plan their drive accordingly.
When I first discovered this app, I was amazed with how useful it sounded. This app allows people to plan their driving routes ahead of time to avoid any delays or road hazards. Thus, in theory, the potential of more people driving safer routes could reduce the average amount of car accidents that occur. However, the use of this app may lead to unintended consequences. Specifically, this app has the potential to distract drivers from focusing their attention on the road. There is a very good chance that someone who spots an accident will quickly take their eyes off the road order to post their observations on Waze.
Phone applications draw attention away from the road
Distracted driving is becoming one of the deadliest causes of car accidents. According to a United States Government website for Distracted Driving (See www.distraction.gov), at any given moment during daylight hours, over 600,000 vehicles are being driven by someone using a hand-held device.
Furthermore, an estimated 421,000 people were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving a distracted driver. These two stats are alarming, especially when considering these numbers in light of the potential abuse of apps like Waze. Since Waze calls for the user to report road hazards based on their location on the phone’s GPS, it naturally invites the increasing amount of users to use the app while driving. The amount of time it could take a driver to unlock their phone, scroll to the app, enter their data and post their observations is frightening. This entices drivers to take their eyes off the road for multiple seconds. Anyone who’s either been in a car accident or knows someone who has can tell you it only takes a second for an accident to occur.
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Operating heavy equipment like a motor vehicle requires the driver’s undivided attention. Every time the user looks at their phone, they are putting themselves and the drivers around them at serious risk of bodily harm. There is no doubt that apps like Waze can provide an avenue to create a safer and easier drive. However, users need to be responsible and exercise extreme caution when using this app. If users feel compelled to notify other users about a traffic jam, for example, they should safely operate their car to the nearest area and park before posting.
Contact the aggressive personal injury team if you have been injured
If you have been injured in an accident due to a distracted driver, you should seek a personal injury attorney to help protect your rights. You may be entitled to compensation for your damages due to the fault of another driver. Contact the Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA for a free evaluation of your case today at 727-451-6900.
Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33765