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How Cell Phone Use Still Affecting Traffic Accidents

February 13, 2024 | Category: Automobile Accidents, Personal Injury | Share

A recent 2023 survey of 200 Florida drivers found that the majority of participants admitted speaking on a cell phone while driving at least once a month, and a fifth of respondents said they had been in “near miss” accidents because of texting. More than 50 percent of those surveyed said they knew someone who had been injured in an accident with a distracted driver.

Cell phone use is still affecting traffic accidents97 percent of Americans own cell phones, and 92 percent of people over 65 years of age have cell phones. Experts report that 85 percent of Americans have smartphones that require eyes, fingers, and attention to do most of their functions.

Studies have shown that drivers who use their cell phones while driving are just as impaired as drivers who drive impaired by alcohol and/or drugs. Impairment has shown to be the same whether drivers use handheld devices or hands-free devices.

Florida Legislation to Prevent Accidents Caused by Cell Phone Use

The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) worked with the state legislature to pass the Wireless Communications While Driving Law in 2019.

The Wireless Communications While Driving Law is Section 316.305 and Section 316.306 of Florida Statutes.

Section 316.305 allows law enforcement to stop motor vehicles and issue citations to motorists who are texting and driving. A person may not operate a motor vehicle while manually typing or entering multiple letters, numbers, or symbols into a wireless communications device to text, email, and instant message.

Section 316.306 is a prohibition on using wireless communications devices in a handheld manner in school and work zones. A person may not operate a motor vehicle while using a wireless communications device in a handheld manner in a designated school crossing, school zone, or active work zone area. Active work zone, as it pertains to Section 316.306, Florida Statutes, means that construction personnel are present or are operating equipment on the road or immediately adjacent to the work zone area.

FLHSMV Educational Campaign

FLHSMV also conducts the educational campaign, Put it Down: Focus on Driving, to deter cell phone use while driving. Put it Down: Focus on Driving is a partnership campaign between the FLHSMV, law enforcement partners, and other agencies in Florida that stresses the importance of driving undistracted.

The Effects of Cell Phone Use on Drivers

Distractions, like cell phone use, occupy the mind, eyes, and if not hands-free, the hands. When driving, drivers need to use equal amounts of physical and mental focus to avoid accidents.

FLHSMV reports that drivers must perceive hazards, react to them, and give vehicles the time to stop to avoid crashes. A vehicle continues to travel from the time of distance perception and reaction distance before drivers hit the brakes. Drivers traveling at 50 mph can nearly travel the length of a football field before they can stop.

Fort Myers Personal Injury Lawyer Assists Distracted Driver Accident Victims

Accidents caused by distracted drivers who use cell phones can be prevented. Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A. assists accident victims whose lives are changed because of distracted drivers. Spivey Law represents people injured in numerous types of personal injury and wrongful death accidents throughout the state of Florida. All of the firm’s clients have unique personal injury cases. Our firm provides personal contact and communication along with aggressive representation.

Should you or a loved one be injured in an accident please contact Spivey Law 24/7 at 239.337.7483, toll-free at 1.888.477.4839, or online at There are no costs or attorney fees until the firm receives a monetary recovery for its clients.


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