Smartphones Behind the Wheel: Help, or Hurt?

Smartphones are involved in over twenty-seven percent of all car crashes in the United States, contributing to causing over 27,000 injuries each year. Many crashes happen because of a driver is focused on a screen instead of the street. While in some cases after a crash a smartphone can be a lifeline, at times smartphone apps may even help prevent an accident from happening.

The car accident lawyers at Pignatelli & Associates, PC can give you more than legal advice after an accident: they can provide resources to help you avoid costly crashes and lifelong injuries and get home safe and avoid traffic, weather and other road hazards. Consider checking-out these apps.

More than Maps: Waze (Apple, Android), a free GPS helps drivers by reducing handset access, routing around backed-up and busy roads, and allowing users to report hazards to the community. Waze is compatible with dash-connected display systems to prevent hand-held handset use while driving. Even in older vehicles without fancy screens, Waze warns users not to input while the vehicle is in motion. If the user is driving, it will not allow access to many features. Waze also allows drivers to get free, real-time traffic updates to avoid higher rates of car wrecks around higher numbers of vehicles or sudden traffic jams. Finally, Waze allows users to report hazards they see on the road, such as traffic stops on the shoulder, disabled vehicles in the roadway, potholes or animals in the roadway.

Are Your Loved Ones on the Road? Life360 (Apple, Android) allows families and friends to stay safe by using GPS tracking and reporting features on the highway. Life360 users can manually trigger a silent alert and send their location to a select list of family and emergency contacts as well as first responders. It offers its users, for a monthly fee, access to 24/7 roadside assistance with up to fifty miles of free towing. Its higher-tier subscription automatically detects a car accident (through the smartphone’s accelerometer) and dispatches emergency personnel to the GPS coordinates of the smartphone. These same plans allow access to police reports and crime data to allow users to avoid locations with high rates of crime.

Do Not Disturb! DND Mode on both (Apple, Android) give users the option to avoid the temptation to text and the craving to click. In Do Not Disturb mode, users can choose to block all notifications or to only see notifications from their favorites. While driving, users can choose to have these notifications read aloud instead of displayed on the screen. Some smartphones will automatically respond to incoming texts with a custom response, such as “Can’t text, I’m on the road.”

The Trial Lawyers at Pignatelli & Associates, PC have more than forty years’ experience. We strive to achieve extraordinary results, results few are able to obtain. We have recovered more than $90 million for our clients in personal injury, car and truck accident, medical malpractice and wrongful death cases. We fight for injured workers. We defend the wrongfully accused. Legal questions? We have answers – and get results.