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Preventing Florida Truck Accidents: NTSB Recommends Banning Commercial Drivers from Texting and Cell Phone use While Driving

The National Transportation Safety Board is recommending that all states ban commercially licensed drivers from talking on the cell phone or texting while operating their vehicles. The recommendation comes in the wake of federal officials confirming that the 2010 tractor-trailer truck crash in Kentucky that killed 11 people occurred because the trucker became distracted while talking on his cell phone. The victims that died included the truck driver and 10 of the 12 people in the van that was struck. Two young children survived the crash with injuries. Most of the victims were from the same family. Per the investigation into the deadly truck crash, truck driver Kenneth Laymon had been texting and talking on his phone in the hours leading up to the collision. Fatigue was also a factor, as was the failure of the cable barriers located along the median of the road where the accident happened. The semi-truck crash occurred 13 hours into Laymon’s drive and 437 miles from his departure point. The NTSB doesn’t have the authority to ban commercial drivers from cell phone conversations and texting, which is why it is making the recommendation to all 50 states and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Distracted Driving Currently, in Florida there is no ban on cell phone talking or texting. (Other states have partial bans, including a ban on handheld devices, a ban for school drivers and new drivers, and/or a texting ban.) This isn’t to say that state lawmakers haven’t made attempts. Just this last session, several bills were introduced pushing for a texting ban and barring young drivers from using cell phones, but they did not make it through. This past weekend, cell phone use was believed to be a factor in a Lake Worth car crash that claimed one man’s life. According to WPTV.com, Raynald Petigny may have been texting when he was rear-ended by a truck. Petigny, 35, died at the Palm Beach County, Florida truck accident site. Texting while driving and talking on a cell phone are proven driver distractions that can cause serious Palm Beach County personal injury and wrongful death. It doesn’t matter whether the person using the phone or PDA is riding a truck, bus, motorcycle, car, or crossing the street. Some 1.3 million auto crashes resulting in thousands of deaths and hundreds of thousands of injuries are a result of this type of careless behavior. Cell Phone and Texting Laws, Governors Highway Safety Association More Blog Posts: Florida Wrongful Death Lawsuit Blames Volusia County for Truck Accident on Beach that Killed 4-Year-Old, Florida Injury Attorney Blog, August 11, 2011 NHTSA Reports 5,474 Distracted Driving Deaths in 2009, Florida Injury Attorney Blog, October 5, 2010 South Florida Pickup Truck Crash Kills 2 Broward County Teens, Injures Four Others, Florida Injury Attorney Blog, April 20, 2011 If you or someone you love was seriously injured in a car accident because a driver was texting, talking on the cell phone, or engaged in any other type of careless driving behavior, you may have a civil case that could allow you or your loved one to recover Palm Beach, Florida personal injury damages.

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