Mobile device technology is a wonderful thing; it helps us to stay connected with our friends, family, and careers. However, the use of cell phones and other mobile devices have caused a huge increase in automobile accidents due to distracted driving. Here in North Central West Virginia, distracted driving on I-79 between Morgantown and Flatwoods have caused thousands of serious car wrecks and collisions. And that’s just one stretch of main road out of a huge network of WV state, county, and municipal roads–add up the distracted driving incidents that have occurred in the entire road system, and the statistics can get pretty overwhelming.

Many of the distractions that cause these accidents come from the use of cell phones and other mobile devices while driving. Texting, taking photos or video, and using social media while driving are unfortunately very common practices, especially by younger drivers.

Not only is the use of mobile devices while driving dangerous, but it is also against the law. According to the Division of Motor Vehicles:

West Virginia distracted driving laws have been in place since 2012. To reduce and prevent texting and driving accidents across the state, the WV driving regulations employ a combination of primary laws and graduated penalties.

The state continues to fight unsafe driving practices, especially among young and inexperienced motorists. Ongoing messaging by authorities keeps the dangers of texting while driving fresh in the public consciousness. Law enforcement maintains an active presence on the roads, issuing citations to foster a culture of safe driving practices and stop distracted driving before more lives are lost.

In order to remain compliant with the law, motorists should not only equip their vehicles with hands-free devices, but actually use them. Texting, using social media, taking photos or video, or even typing a location into your phone’s GPS takes your eyes off the road and your hand off the steering wheel. Avoid picking up your phone altogether or–better yet–place your phone in your glove box, purse, or trunk so you are not tempted to use it until you get to your destination.

At Mountain State Law, we advocate for the victims of car accidents caused by distracted driving on I-79 and throughout the road systems in north central West Virginia. If you’ve been involved in a car wreck, motorcycle accident, or commercial vehicle collision and you think the driver may have been using their cell phone or performing another unsafe activity that caused them to be distracted, call our team for a free consultation.