The Year Of Living Dangerously

F Troop officers erected thirty-five human silhouette cutouts near their headquarters on State Highway 594, one for each fatal car crash victim in the group’s twelve parish area in 2016.

Troopers lament that there will probably be more victims before year’s end, because there are usually several fatal car crashes in December. The figures include a child-size cutout to represent an infant victim, and two that wear badges, representing law enforcement officers from Winnsboro and Sterlington who died this year in car crashes. Typically, the officers erect a similar display inside the building, but they felt it might have more of an impact in a more visible location.

“There’s 35 families that are missing a family member because of a fatal car crash,” observed Troop F information director Michael Reichardt. [Read more…]

Is SnapChat Promoting Distracted Driving?

Imagine going over 100 mph in your car and then putting a blindfold on. It sounds insane, but that’s basically what happened last September when an 18 year-old driver took her eyes off the road to use SnapChat and its “Speed Filter,” causing her to crash into the backend of another vehicle while traveling at a speed of 107 mph.

What Is SnapChat?

SnapChat is a popular social media application (app) most commonly used by teens and young adults. SnapChat allows users to share photos and videos; however, these photos and videos are only live for 24 hours before they are deleted. The app awards users with trophies for the frequency at which they use the app’s filters. SnapChat’s speed filter uses GPS technology to record the user’s speed and overlays the speed atop the user’s photo.

Teenagers are particularly susceptible to thrill seeking behavior, and this filter has teenage users across the country engaging in dangerous distracted driving. Because the pictures are deleted after 24 hours, it’s impossible to tell how widespread the problem is, but it has already proven to cause catastrophic car accident injuries.

SnapChat While Driving

SnapChat use while driving is one of the most dangerous forms of distracted driving and speeding, all for the sake of taking a sharable “selfie” photo. On average, people texting while driving take their eyes off the road for five seconds. People using SnapChat while driving easily take their eyes off the road for even longer. In addition, the SnapChat speed filter encourages users to speed, greatly increasing the severity of injuries in the event of a car accident.

In July 2015, a petition was started on asking SnapChat to remove its speed filter because it was encouraging dangerous behavior among users. Despite receiving several thousand signatures on the petition and the catastrophic crash causing the user to hit the back end of another vehicle at 107 milers per hour several months later, SnapChat has not removed the filter. Regardless of SnapChat’s filters, drivers have a responsibility to drive safely.

Distracted Driving

Using SnapChat, texting, eating, talking to a passenger, or engaging in any distracting behavior while driving is dangerous for the driver, passengers, and any surrounding motorists. It is a driver’s responsibility to be in control of their vehicle at all times. This includes hands on the wheel, eyes on the road, and a mind on the task of driving.

Louisiana Distracted Driving Accident Attorneys

There’s no excuse for distracted driving. If you were injured in a distracted driving car accident, contact the experienced Lake Charles, Louisiana distracted driving accident attorneys at Hoffoss Devall today to learn how we can help.

Distracted Driving May Have Caused Fatal Accident in Louisiana

Louisiana drivers know it is important to pay attention to the road, their surroundings and other vehicles as they drive. However, it is sometimes easy to become distracted by any number of things. Cell phones, eating and other activities that divert a driver’s attention from the road are frequently cited as factors in vehicle collisions. This can easily become dangerous and cause a serious or fatal accident.

Louisiana State Police troopers say that a 19-year-old driver was distracted as he heading westbound on Highway 16. Two motorcycles were coming toward him in the eastbound lane. Whatever it was that distracted the driver of the car caused him to drift into the opposing lane and slammed into the motorcycles head-on.

Both of the riders were wearing D.O.T. approved helmets, but that did not save one of the riders. The 29-year-old man suffered fatal injuries and died at the scene. The other rider, a 51-year-old man, suffered moderate injuries for which he received treatment at an area hospital. His current condition is unknown.

The driver of the car suffered minor injuries. Alcohol and drugs are not believed to be causal factors in this fatal accident, but toxicology samples were taken as per standard procedure. Charges are pending against the young man as troopers conduct their investigation. The family of the deceased motorcycle rider and the injured rider may file wrongful death and personal injury claims, respectively, against him as well. Any monetary award received as a result of a successfully presented claim may be used to defray the costs associated with this tragedy.