Eating, drinking, texting, reading, and watching videos are all examples of actions that can distract a driver. Due to the fact that serious accidents and injuries are often the result of distracted driving, Wisconsin legislators have proposed a new law regarding distracted drivers to stop this dangerous behavior.
If you’ve been hurt in an accident that was caused by a distracted driver, contact a Wisconsin car accident lawyer at Studinski Law, LLC at (715) 343-2850 to learn more about how we can help.
According to the Department of Transportation, there were over 25,000 accidents in Wisconsin in 2016 related to distracted driving. 121 deaths and over 11,000 injuries were the result of these accidents. These astounding figures led Senator Van Wanggaard and Representatives Ron Tusler and Shannon Zimmerman to propose a new Wisconsin distracted driving law.
The new Wisconsin distracted driving law would prohibit drivers from using their smartphones to “enter, transmit, or access data” while behind the wheel. With this new law, drivers would not be allowed to use social media or surf the internet while they are driving. Drivers would only have the right to use their data to talk into a cell phone or use a GPS app such as Google Maps.
Currently, the law only prohibits drivers from texting and emailing. Thanks to the popularity of smartphones and social media over the past few years, it has become all too common for drivers to engage in distracted driving, making this new law a smart move. Representative Tusler stated that, although it is possible to use a cell phone responsibly while driving, some activities, such as tweeting, updating a Facebook status, and sending a picture on Snapchat should all be reserved for another time.
In order to enforce this new law, anyone caught entering, transmitting, or accessing data may end up with a maximum fine of $400. This fine is significantly more than the current $20-$100 fine that is used as a penalty for anyone who is found texting and driving.
Additionally, this new law establishes that any driver who hits and kills someone else while they are distracted on their phones will be penalized with a felony charge of homicide by negligent use of a vehicle. Lawmakers hope that this new law will become official by the end of this year.
In a statement, Representative Zimmerman stated that this law is a significant step in the right direction of raising awareness and increasing the punishment for drivers who distract themselves rather than paying attention to the road. Zimmerman believes this law would support fewer crashes and save more Wisconsin lives.
If you or a loved one have been injured because of a car accident caused by a distracted driver, it is in your best interest to contact the Wisconsin car accident lawyers at Studinski Law, LLC today. By doing so, you may be able to collect compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses.
Call us today at (715) 343-2850 to discuss your case.