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Mobile calls can kill

Texas motorists might believe that a cellphone call is safe because of the use of a hands-free headset or voice-activated speaker system in the vehicle. In fact, a majority of drivers believe that the inclusion of such systems in vehicle design must imply safety. However, one's brain remains engaged and distracted by a call even after it has ended. Motorists may want to be aware of these concerns as they endeavor to drive safely.

The National Safety Council has initiated an educational campaign during its Distracted Driving Awareness Month to emphasize the dangers of all social activity involving cellphones while driving. The campaign, Take Back Your Drive, is intended to impact driver decisions beyond the month of April as motorists are reminded of the various ways in which they might use their phones while remaining hands-free. The multitasking involved in using infotainment systems, accessing smartphone features that are hands-free, and even talking to another party can draw attention away from the road and increase the risk of a crash.

Hands-free driving has become a huge emphasis because of the severity of many automobile accidents involving texting while driving. However, any distraction that causes an accident could lead to a deadly outcome. A driver could be considered negligent for fumbling a cup of coffee or applying makeup if a car wreck results. While some might view a traffic citation for such actions as uncommon, these are examples of multitasking behaviors that create a certain level of risk for some drivers.

An injury occurring because of distracted driving could range from minor to deadly. A driver who causes an injury to another in such an accident might think that auto insurance would handle the costs. However, an inadequate amount of coverage in comparison to the level of damages caused could lead to a personal injury lawsuit.

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