12/14/11   |   By

Are You Guilty of Distracted Driving? | DC Metro Area Personal Injury Law Blog

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Posted by: Salvatore J. Zambri, founding member and senior partner

During a radio interview this morning, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood discussed his efforts to educate drivers about the dangers of distracted driving.  Distracted Driving has been the centerpiece of Mr. LaHood’s  tenure for the past three years. Distracted driving is an epidemic which continues to cause accidents, injuries and death.  According to Secretary LaHood, getting the problem of distracted driving under control is similar to getting the seatbelt issue from several years ago under control.  Two important components are necessary to accomplish that goal:

  • Drivers accept personal responsibility
  • Enforcement of distracted driving laws

“Distracted driving is not only dangerous, deaths and injuries from this reckless practice are preventable,” LaHood said in a statement.

“As we look ahead to the holiday driving season and beyond, our message on distracted driving is simple: There’s no call or text message that’s so important that it can’t wait.”

In related news, the National Transportation Safety Board recommended a nationwide ban on driver use of personal electronic devices Tuesday, following its investigation into a deadly accident last year in Missouri. The NTSB has been investigating a deadly crash in Gray Summit, Missouri last year. A 19-year-old pickup driver sent 11 texts in the 11 minutes before before the accident, according to the NTSB, including one “right before impact.” The accident killed two people and injured 38.

According to the NTSB Chairman, Deborah A.P. Hersman, “We will never know whether the driver was typing, reaching for the phone, or reading a text when his pickup ran into the truck in front of him without warning,”

“But, we do know he had been distracted — cognitively, manually, and visually — while driving.

“Driving was not his only priority.”

Every year I give presentations to area schools and parents about distracted driving in an effort to teach young people the importance of driving carefully, and to empower them to be sure they do not allow others to drive while distracted, at least not while they are in the car.

If you or your child’s school would like to know more about my presentation, please let me know. I of course do not charge a fee for it, as it is part of my volunteer community service program.

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About the author:

Mr. Zambri is a board-certified civil trial attorney by the National Board of Trial Advocates and a Past-President of the Trial Lawyers Association of Metropolitan Washington, D.C. The association recently named him “Trial Lawyer of the Year” (2011). He has been rated by Washingtonian magazine as a “Big Gun” and among the “top 1%” of all lawyers in the Washington metropolitan area. The magazine also describes him as “one of Washington’s best–most honest and effective lawyers” who specializes in personal injury matters, including automobile accident claims, premises liability, product liability, medical malpractice, and work-accident claims. He has successfully litigated multiple cases against truck and bus companies, the Washington Metropolitan Area transit Authority, and other automobile owners. His law firm, in fact, has obtained the largest settlement ever in a personal injury case involving WMATA. Mr. Zambri has also been acknowledged as one of “The Best Lawyers in America” by Best Lawyers (2011 edition) and has been repeatedly named a “Super Lawyer” by Super Lawyer magazine (March/April 2010)– national publications that honor the top lawyers in America.

If you have any questions about your legal rights, please email Mr. Zambri at [email protected] or call him at 202-822-1899.

Regan Zambri Long
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