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Fort Lauderdale Car Accidents Would be Curbed by NHTSA Proposals

Our vehicles come equipped with so many high-tech features nowadays, it’s a wonder we even need houses. You can check your e-mail, make phone calls, send text messages, request map directions, surf the internet and so much more – all from the comfort of your driver’s seat. And that’s exactly the problem that safe driving advocates have with all of it. They say having all these technologies readily available behind the wheel exposes drivers to an increased risk of car accidents in Fort Lauderdale and elsewhere.

According to, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has proposed some changes. The Administration recently made a recommendation to automakers to stop making these devices available while a vehicle is moving. Officials with the NHTSA think that GPS devices, e-mail, text messages and phone calls should only be made while the car is in park.

Our Fort Lauderdale car accident attorneys understand that automakers are making vehicles to cater to the consumers, who are often busy, on-the-go motorists. Nowadays, there seems to be a need to be connected via internet, phone and texts 24/7. What we need to focus on when we’re behind the wheel is driving. Operating a vehicle is no time to engage in other activities. Although many of the new-car technologies are designed to help make our drive time easier, some people worry these devices are still just taking too much of our precious attention off the roadway.

“The guidelines we’re proposing would offer real-world guidance to automakers to help them develop electronic devices that provide features consumers want without disrupting a driver’s attention or sacrificing safety,” said NHTSA Administrator David Strickland.

Gloria Bergquist with the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers says these technologies are helping to make activities safer for drivers – and that these are actions drivers were already doing before the technology became available.

Under the proposed guidelines, only passenger cars and SUVs would be affected. The proposal does not limit technologies whose sole function is driver safety, like in-car warning systems. Drivers would still be able to use everything else, but only when the car’s transmission is safely in park.

Some argue that stopping these technologies when the car is moving is unfair. Many times, there are still passengers present in the car who can help with phone calls, texting, GPS navigating, etc. and the devices shouldn’t be disabled for them, too.

The ultimate responsibility here though lies with drivers. They must be willing to keep their eyes on the road, their hands on the steering wheel and their minds on driving. Until we can all exercise safe, alert and cautious driving habits, there will be a high number of accidents caused by distractions – technology or not.

If you or someone who is close to you has been injured in a car accident in Fort Lauderdale, Delray Beach, Pompano Beach or in any of the surrounding areas, contact our personal injury attorneys at Freeman, Mallard, Sharp & Gonzalez, LLC for a confidential appointment to discuss your rights. Call 1-800-529-2368.

More Blog Entries:

Parental Involvement Can Prevent Teen Car Accidents In Delray Beach, Beyond, Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Attorney Blog, February 1, 2012

Fatal Florida Crash Illustrates Need to Practice Safe Driving Habits, Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Attorney Blog, January 21, 2012

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