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Which is the Worst County in Georgia for Distracted Driving?

By Butler Prather LLP on August 14, 2019

Distracted driving is dangerous driving. The concept of distracted driving is nothing new. It has been around for as long as we’ve had vehicles. However, distracted driving has taken on a whole new meaning over the last decade.

With the rise of smartphones and our reliance on them for everything that we do, distracted driving has become a serious cause of vehicle crashes. Today, we want to discuss which county is the worst in Georgia for distracted driving as well as how the rest of the state stacks up.

Which is the Worst County in Georgia for Distracted Driving?

Jackson County has a distracted driver problem

Jackson County leads the way when we look at distracted driving incidents. With a population of a little more than 60,000, they currently have around 5.72 distracted driving citations for every 1,000 people.

  • There were 346 distracted driving convictions in Jackson County in 2018, which is 223 more than the year before.

It is not just a problem in Jackson County

Counties all over Georgia have problems with distracted driving. The next four counties on the list are:

  • Gwinnett County – 5.40 convictions per 1,000 people
  • Liberty County – 4.84 convictions per 1,000 people
  • Walker County – 4.64 convictions per 1,000 people
  • Hall County – 4.27 convictions per 1,000 people

What has Georgia done to curb distracted driving?

Georgia has taken some serious steps to curb distracted driving in the state. Several laws are not in place to deter drivers from even thinking about using their cell phones.

  • Any Georgia driver under 18 years of age is banned from cell phone use while the vehicle is in motion. This includes talking, texting, or looking at the screen. Using a hands-free device is not allowed if the driver is under 18.
  • School bus drivers cannot use cell phones while the bus is in motion or while loading and unloading passengers.
  • All drivers, regardless of age, are banned from texting while driving. This includes watching videos and reading texts like emails or news stories.
  • If you are over 18 years of age, you can talk on the phone, but only when using a hands-free device.

Work-related distracted driving is also a problem

Drivers of commercial vehicles need to follow all Georgia laws related to distracted driving. Drivers of large commercial trucks are also subject to the rules of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). The FMCSA regulations are summed up nicely by the following:

  • No holding
  • No reaching
  • No dialing
  • No texting
  • No reading

Commercial trucks can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds. A distracted driving crash with one of these vehicles will usually result in serious injuries or fatalities. The FMCSA has major penalties in place for those caught driving while distracted, with fines of up to $2,750.

Other types of distracted driving

While the focus has been on electronic devices, it is also important to remember that distracted driving is also caused by:

  • Eating while driving
  • Applying makeup while driving
  • Reading a book while driving
  • Talking to or looking at other passengers
  • And more

What are some common distracted driving crash injuries?

Distracted driving can lead to serious vehicle crashes. Some of the most common injuries we see as a result of distracted driving crashes include:

  • Broken and dislocated bones
  • Severe lacerations
  • Internal organ damage
  • Internal bleeding
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Whiplash injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Concussions

Posted in: Car Accidents

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