December 2011 Archives

USDOT Hopes "OMG" Campaign Will Reduce Teen Car Accidents in North and South Carolina, Nation

December 20, 2011, by

According to Senate Bill 96, drivers in the state of North Carolina are prohibited from using a cell phone for e-mailing or text messaging while behind the wheel of a motor vehicle, according to DrivingLaws.org. Fire department officials, ambulance drivers and law enforcement officers are excused from this law. Who's not excused from this law? Teenagers. Still, many teen drivers think it's okay to text while driving. Most of these young drivers fail to understand the risks associated with such behavior.
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To help reduce the risks of distraction-related car accidents in North and South Carolina, the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) recently launched the "OMG" public service announcement (PSA) campaign. This PSA aims to raise awareness in teenage driver about the risks, dangers and consequences of texting behind the wheel. The PSAs will be airing on approximately 12,000 gas station pump-top screens and on nearly 550 Regal Cinema movie screens nationwide through the month of December. Residents can also view the videos on Distraction.gov. Officials believe that these forms of communication are quick and easy ways to reach their targeted audience -- teenage drivers.

Our Greenville,South Carolina and Asheville, North Carolina teen car accident lawyers understand the risks that teenage drivers face on our roadways. They're the age group most likely to get into an auto accident. They're also the age group that is most likely to text behind the wheel. As we approach the holiday season, traffic on our roadways will increase significantly. More traffic equals increased risks for accidents. Parents are urged to sit down and talk with the young drivers about the dangers they'll inevitably face on our roadways and the dangers of texting while driving.

"Teen drivers are particularly vulnerable to distracted driving, which is why we are making an extra effort to ensure they understand the dangers," said Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood.

The PSAs feature hip lingo, like "LOL" and "L8R," that is commonly using by these young texters to communicate with the young drivers. We understand that it's popular for teenagers to stay in touch with friends, but doing so behind the wheel is not only illegal, but it's dangerous. Teen drivers are four times more likely that drivers in any other age group to be involved in a car accident on our roadwys.

Greg Dunn, the President and the COO of Regal Entertainment Group, says that he is pleased to join forces with the USDOT. He adds that he feels that this partnership will help to make a difference in the safety on our roadways during the busy holiday traffic season.

There are already 35 states and the District of Columbia that have made texting behind the wheel illegal. It is illegal to use a cell phone while driving in nine states and the District of Columbia.

Teenagers are new behind the wheel and fail to possess the same type of driving experience as older drivers. For this reason, parents are encouraged to reiterate the importance of curbing the distractions behind the wheel. Your talk could help to save your child's life. Have a safe and Happy Holiday season and please be cautious on our roadways.

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More Fatal Car Accidents in North Carolina, Report Says

December 15, 2011, by

Twenty states experienced a decrease in the number of traffic-accident fatalities in 2010 compared to the 2009 stats. North Carolina was not one of them. In 2010, there were nearly 1,320 people who died in car accidents in Asheville and elsewhere throughout the state. This is an increase from the 2010 total fatality count. According to the recently released report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

The 2010 Motor Vehicle Crashes Overview reports the number of traffic fatalities across the U.S. decreased in 2010 from the previous year. The NHTSA also notes that 2010 marks the lowest number of fatalities since 1949.
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Our North Carolina and South Carolina car accident lawyers would like to point out that the number of traffic fatalities crept up as 2010 progressed. Experts believe that this trend is going to continue. As the economy continues recover, motorists are expected to hit the roadway more often and for longer distances. The increase in travelers increases your risks for a fatal accident on our roadways.

We'd also like to point out that while the NHTSA is bragging about lower numbers, the stats of various types of accidents actually increased. Fatalities among motorcyclists, large truck occupants, van occupants, bicyclists and pedestrians were higher in 2010 than in 2009. In 2010, there were almost 33,000 people killed on U.S. roadways. In addition to these fatalities, another 2.24 million people were injured.

Many of these accidents were caused by drunk drivers and by distracted drivers. To help to better track these types of accidents, the NHTSA has created two new measures: the "distraction-affected crashes" and the "alcohol-related crashes" measure. In 2010, a third of all traffic fatalities involved an alcohol-impaired driver. Nearly 3,100 additional people were killed in accidents that involved a distracted driver.

While the number of traffic fatalities may have decreased, the number of injuries actually increased. So did the number of fatalities in urban areas and among vehicle passengers who were wearing a seat belt at the time of an accident.

Motorcyclists also experienced an increase in the number of traffic fatalities. The number of fatalities among motorcyclists who were under the age of 55 saw a decrease of about 80 deaths, while the number of fatalities among motorcyclists who were over the age of 55 increased by nearly 120 fatalities.

When talking about the time of day, evening saw a majority of the decease while the number of daytime fatalities remained about the same.

Drivers are asked to remain cautious behind the wheel and to take the news of the recent reduction in traffic fatalities with a grain of salt. Roadways fatalities are still alarmingly high, especially through specific categories. As the economy recovers, travel will be more common and risks for an accident will increase even more. Be safe, cautious and drive defensively to avoid serious accident.

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