Yet another city in the Valley has passed a law that bans the use of hand-held cellphones while driving. Earlier this year, Glendale’s city council unanimously enacted the ban, which will take effect on Feb. 7. Glendale is the latest city in Arizona to pass such a ban.
While a majority of states are taking steps to ensure safety for drivers and passengers on the road, Arizona has left it up to each separate city and municipality to make its own rules. Many cities have done just that, but there are various rules and regulations for each city, making it difficult for drivers to know what rules they have to follow – and making it dangerous for everyone on the roadways.
DISTRACTED DRIVING STATISTICS
According to DMV.org, more than 1,000 people are injured every day due to the actions of a distracted driver, and at least nine people are killed daily because of a distracted driver. Texting while driving is the leading cause of death in teens, and still, 42 percent of teens said they texted while driving in 2015. Last year, AAA said that distracted driving accounts for a quarter to half of all vehicle accidents in the country.
In Arizona, the Department of Public Safety found that 741 auto accidents in 2017 were the result of distracted driving, which accounted for approximately 11 percent of all crashes in the state.
While these statistics are alarming, Arizona is only one of three states – along with Montana and South Carolina – that does not have a statewide ban on texting while driving.
WHAT ARE EACH CITY’S LAWS?
Glendale will soon prohibit handheld cellphone use while driving. Throughout the Valley:
- Phoenix prohibits texting while driving
- Tempe’s law says it’s only illegal to text or talk on the phone while driving if a police officer can prove that the driver’s actions actually posed a risk
- Fountain Hills prohibits texting while driving completely
- El Mirage and Surprise have similar bans to Glendale
While these variances make it difficult to know what does and does not constitute an illegal act, each city has clearly recognized that distracted driving is a serious threat to safety on the road, and taken steps to address the situation.
HIRE AN EXPERIENCED LAWYER IF YOU’VE BEEN INJURED IN A DISTRACTED DRIVING CRASH
Regardless of what a certain city or state’s laws are, it’s in everyone’s best interest to avoid distracted driving caused by cellphone usage. Accidents can cause serious and irreparable harm to you, your passengers and people in other vehicles.
Despite Arizona’s lack of a statewide ban on distracted driving, you still have rights if you’ve been injured by a distracted driver. If you have, you’ll need to hire an experienced Phoenix lawyer such as Miller Kory Rowe LLP to help represent you. Contact us today for a free consultation at (602) 648-4045.