Austin, TX (PRWEB) July 04, 2014
A proposed city ordinance in Austin would prohibit drivers from using a cellphone unless they have a hands-free device, a proposal that will hopefully become law and reduce the number of auto accidents in Austin caused by distracted drivers, according to Austin personal injury lawyer Tony R. Bertolino of Bertolino, LLP.
Bertolino expressed his comments in response to a June 2, 2014, news report from KXAN Television in Texas. (KXAN, “Hands-free cell phone rules in Austin could be far-reaching”)
“A dozen states already have laws requiring drivers to use hands-free cellphones,” Bertolino said. “The reason is simple. Study after study has demonstrated that using a cellphone with your hands while driving increases the likelihood of being involved in a distracted driving car accident. Austin city officials should be applauded for taking steps to reduce auto accidents. Far too many people already sustain serious injuries or worse due to distracted drivers. We know because our law office works with injury victims dealing with the consequences of such serious accidents.”
A distracted driving study group drafted the proposed city ordinance that would require drivers in Austin, TX to use hands-free cellphones, according to KXAN News. The study group consists of members of the Austin Police Department, transportation officials, the City of Austin’s law department and the general public, KXAN News reported.
The proposed ordinance was presented to Austin’s Public Safety Commission on June 2, KXAN News reported. Austin’s City Council could vote on the proposed ordinance as soon as August 1, KXAN News reported.
The proposed hands-free ordinance might affect other people besides drivers in Austin, KXAN News reported. City officials are considering expanding the proposed ordinance to include bicyclists, pedicabs and perhaps even pedestrians, according to KXAN News.
Currently, Austin already has a law banning texting while driving in the city, KXAN News. Texas, however, has no statewide ban on texting while driving for all drivers, according to the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) website. The sole exception is in school zones in Texas, where texting while driving and using a hand-held cellphone is against the law statewide for all drivers, according to the GHSA.
Nationwide, 43 states have laws banning texting while driving and 12 states require drivers to use hands-free devices while talking on a cellphone while driving, according to the GHSA website as of June 2014.
Such laws might seem strict, but they hopefully save lives and prevent car accidents caused by distracted drivers, according to Austin, TX distracted driving accident lawyer Tony R. Bertolino of Bertolino, LLP.
“One of the most frustrating aspects about these tragic accidents is they could have been prevented in most cases,” Bertolino said. “When drivers take their eyes off the road, even for just a few seconds, the consequences can often be devastating. Even though texting while driving is legal in Texas, you still have rights if you’re a victim of a distracted driving accident in Texas. That’s why it’s critical you contact us if you’re dealing with the consequences of such serious accidents. We can help you review all your legal options. We’re on your side.”
For more information about distracted driving accidents in Texas and the legal options available to you, contact our Texas personal injury law firm. Call (800) 210-0126 or complete the online contact form.
About Bertolino, LLP
Bertolino, LLP is a Texas law firm with a reputation for providing quality legal services in Austin, TX, Houston, TX and San Antonio, TX. The versatile attorneys handle a wide range of legal issues, including automobile accidents, personal injury, estates and wills, professional licensure and workplace discrimination. Contact Bertolino LLP today to discuss your situation, or visit http://www.belolaw.com.
For more information about what to do if you have faced injury or property damage as a result of another person’s distracted driving, call (800) 210-0126 or complete the online contact form.
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