SOCIAL MEDIA CONTRIBUTES TO CATASTROPHIC CAR ACCIDENTS
Drivers who use social media apps to update their statuses, post selfies or measure record speeds may cause serious car accidents.
Many people understand that talking and texting on a cellphone while behind the wheel greatly increases the risk of being involved in a serious car accident. In 2014 alone, 3,179 people were killed in accidents involving distracted driving, according to Distraction.gov, and countless unreported incidents have occurred as well. Drivers in Tennessee and across the U.S. have difficulties when it comes to putting down their cellphone while driving, and social media does not help the situation. More cases are starting to surface where people who are posting on social media sites while driving are causing deadly car accidents.
Case of social media distraction
One recent case involves the social media site Snapchat, which has a speed filter that measures and posts the speed that the user is traveling at while they take a picture. According to The Verge, a young woman was using this app and attempting to attain the 100 mph trophy when she struck another vehicle. At the time of collision, she was going 107 mph in a 55 mph speed zone. The man who was driving the vehicle she hit now has permanent brain damage as a result of the catastrophic collision. The 18-year-old who caused the car accident even went as far as posting a selfie after the accident occurred letting everyone know that she had been in an accident and was still alive. The victim and his wife filed a lawsuit against the negligent driver and snapchat.
While many people are well aware that social media apps can cause major distractions to drivers, a study conducted by San Diego State University confirmed this belief. Researchers looked at several social media websites to find posts involving the new interactive game, Pokémon Go and how many people actually play the game while driving. In some cases, people have taken pictures of themselves playing the game with their cell phone on the steering wheel. The game requires players to move around in a virtual map that coordinates with the real-world environment in order to catch and collect virtual characters. The study found that as many as 18 percent of tweets reported that players were driving while operating the app.
Finding legal assistance
If you have been involved in a car accident caused by a negligent driver, you may want to speak to an attorney regarding your legal options. You may be eligible for compensation that could help with your medical expenses, lost wages from work and emotional trauma you have experienced as a result of the collision.