Indiana’s “Hands-Free Law” Aims to Stop Distracted Driving
Indiana’s drivers are officially on notice: Effective July 1st, 2020, if you are holding a phone while your vehicle is moving, you will be ticketed.
Having witnessed first-hand the traumatic injuries and lost lives caused by cell phones and distracted driving, Boulton Law Group wishes this law would have been in place at the beginning of the mobile phone revolution.
Distracted Driving: Old Law vs New Law
The hands-free law is actually a much-needed improvement on Indiana’s existing distracted driving law that has been around since July 1st, 2011.
Since 2011, it has been illegal for Indiana’s drivers to type, send, or read e-mail or text messages while operating a vehicle. The problem with this law is that it is narrow in scope and has been extremely difficult for authorities to enforce.
As a result of the old law’s limitations, few drivers are ticketed and the number of Indiana’s texting and driving accidents has eclipsed drunk driving crashes in 2020.
Under Indiana’s hands-free law, local and state authorities now have a clear-cut signal in determining whether or not to pull you over. And should you be ticketed for breaking this law, you could be looking at a $500 fine.
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Simply put, if your car or truck is moving, you cannot have your phone in hand.
Will Indiana’s Hands-Free Reduce Car Crashes?
Indiana State Police realize the law will not stop every instance of distracted driving, however, they are hopeful that it will at least reduce the number of crashes and collisions.
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, 20 states have a complete ban on handheld devices while operating a motor vehicle. The result has been a sharp decrease in car accidents caused by distracted driving.
Additionally, a number of those states have also witnessed up to a 15% reduction in fatal accidents and wrongful deaths. If similar statistics hold true for Indiana, it may be possible to prevent 130 deaths on our highways and interstates.
Types of Distracted Driving Accidents
Whether it is a single or multi-car accident, Boulton Law Group has witnessed and investigated a number of high-profile distracted driving crashes throughout Indiana.
Distracted driving accidents involving a mobile phone often result in one of the following types of collisions:
Rear-end collision – The fraction of a second it takes to look at your phone is enough time for the driver in front of you to abruptly stop and result in your careening into the back of their vehicle.
We have represented many clients who were rear-ended by a defendant who was texting or otherwise distracted by their phone.
Head-on collision – When a driver is distracted by their phone, their vehicle will often subtly drift across center lines.
Because drivers are not fully focused on the road, they do not notice or feel the vehicle drifting, and it leads them into the path of oncoming traffic.
T-bone collision – These collisions occur when a distracted driver is oblivious to a traffic signal or stop sign and recklessly enters an intersection, leaving the distracted driver or another vehicle vulnerable to the always dangerous t-bone collision.
Roll-over accident – A number of distracted driving accidents also involve single vehicles. These accidents occur when a driver feels/senses they have left the roadway, overcorrects to get back onto the road, and rolls their vehicle.
Boulton Law Group has represented a number of passengers who were injured in single-vehicle accidents that were caused by distracted driving.
The idea that you can safely look at your phone or read a text is simply untrue. No one can safely operate a vehicle unless their complete attention is devoted to the task of driving.
In fact, if you look at your phone for mere seconds while driving 55 mph, by the time you have looked back up, your vehicle has covered the length of an entire football field. This explains why our office sees so many of the collisions we just covered.
Boulton Law Group regularly views the pictures of victims and accident scenes caused by mobile phones and distracted driving. Without further explanation, we can assure you that no text or other distraction caused by your phone is worth the pain they can illicit.
Treating Clients Like Family
If a distracted driver caused you or a loved one’s injuries, it may be possible to seek compensation. It is important that you speak to an experienced Indianapolis personal injury lawyer that has a history of handling these case types.
Attorney Matt Boulton founded the Boulton Law Group to give injured people a different choice in law firms. In addition to offering Indiana residents more than 25 years of experience in personal injury matters, Matt has developed a statewide reputation for delivering one-of-a-kind client service. In fact, the entire office is known for treating clients like family.
If you wish to speak to Matt about a distracted driving accident, he offers all callers a Zero Fee Guarantee. Boulton Law Group’s guarantee helps to create a risk-free environment and even the playing field between injured Hoosiers and big insurance companies.
You can ask Matt for legal advice by calling 317-350-2680, or you can write to him by using our confidential contact form. Matt personally reviews all of the firm’s web contacts.
We look forward to hearing your story and going to work for you.