A piece of legislation was recently introduced in Ohio that makes it illegal for drivers to use electronic devices in construction and school zones.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, an average of nine people are killed and over 1,000 people are injured every day in accidents caused by distracted drivers. To reduce the number of accidents, deaths and fatalities in Ohio caused by those texting and driving, a new bill seeks to make it illegal for drivers to use a cellphone in a construction zone during work hours or in a school zone when children are present on the premises, states Fox News.

Currently in Ohio, using a cellphone while driving is only a secondary offense for drivers over the age of 18. However, if this bill is passed, using a cellphone would become a primary offense for all drivers in the state.

Why the new law is necessary

Although this bill has the potential to prevent fatal and injurious car accidents, many wonder why another bill regarding electronic devices is necessary. However, Fox News states that Ohio’s current cellphone restrictions are not effective. Since the ban on texting and driving went into effect in March of 2013, the State Highway Patrol has only given out 440 tickets for this offense.

Distracted driving is more than just cellphone use

While the use of electronic devices plays a large role in the many accidents that cause serious and life-threatening injuries every year, distracted driving includes other activities other than just cellphone use. The CDC states that distracted driving is defined as any activity that causes a driver to take their full attention away from driving and that there are three main types of distraction. These include the following:

  • Visual-This occurs when a driver no longer has their eyes on the road in front of them. For instance, a driver who chooses to look at their GPS device for directions instead of what is occurring on the road is visually distracted.
  • Cognitive-Drivers who are no longer mentally focused on driving are cognitively distracted. For instance, if a driver talks with one of the passengers in their car and dedicates a portion of their concentration to the conversation, they are cognitively distracted.
  • Manual-A driver who takes their hands off of the steering wheel is manually distracted. For example, a driver becomes manually distracted when they reach for their purse or cellphone on the seat next to them.

Drivers who become visually, manually or cognitively distracted put their safety and the safety of others on the road with them at risk. If you were injured in an accident caused by a distracted driver, consult with an attorney who can ensure your rights to proper compensation are protected.

Keywords: distracted, driving, injury, accident