The Texas House Transportation Committee will be hearing testimony from the family who lost a child in a texting car accident. The testimony will be part of the consideration by the committee into whether it is appropriate to move forward on a texting ban for the state of Texas.
I personally favor such legislation because of the inherent danger of texting while driving. One of the shortcomings of many attempts to control texting or cell phone use while driving is a variety of different ordinances passed by individual cities. The clearer the message is to the public on what is legal and what is not the better off we all will be.
California has passed three separate laws relating to cell phone and texting while driving. The first of such laws went into effect almost 4 years ago. In my opinion texting is a part of the problem as is cell phone use while driving. I advocate a ban on all texting while driving and a ban on cell phone use while driving unless a hands-free device is used.
Let us hope that our political leaders will balance the interests of protecting or communities with the inherent realities of a wired society. While studies very on the effectiveness of wireless or hands-free cell phone use, I personally believe it is much safer than holding a cell phone up to your ear. Banning all cell phone use while driving probably is not that practical.
Greg Baumgartner is a Texas personal injury lawyer and the founder of the Baumgartner law firm, which is dedicated to helping personal injury victims seek civil justice. If you would like to speak with a Houston injury attorney call the Baumgartner firm.
One of the chief reasons that America has achieved all that it has accomplished in the last 200 years is that we have always put great value on education. Many families had great pride when their children were the first to obtain a higher education degree. In fact, for many Americans education served as the vehicle to drive the family out of poverty and in to the workplace as a productive Americans.
Now with budget cuts and concerns about spending the first item on the block appears to be education. Certainly, if we want our children to compete in the “global economy” we need to fight to prevent gutting America’s educational opportunities. I realize that we have many different opinions on where our priorities should land and where we should spend our hard-earned dollars.
It looks to me that substantial cuts can be made in certain arenas that don’t involve cutting teachers pay or children’s programs. One of the few people who are in a position to positively impact a child are teachers and coaches both of whom stand to be laid off or driven out of the educational system. While there are many issues regarding teacher compensation, no credible source disputes that they are generally underpaid for their educational accomplishments. Certainly it would be extremely difficult to raise a family on a teacher salary.
It is my hope that strong leadership will prevail and stand up for education in Texas and look for cuts elsewhere. For my fear is that cutting education will serve to undermine America’s long-term prosperity.
On my way to work this morning I observed a large commercial box truck attempting exit a driveway onto a main thoroughfare and nearly topple sideways. It all happened within an instant – the truck driver went up and over an oversized curb on his passenger side while the driver’s side wheels sat perhaps nine inches lower. He continued forging ahead into this ninety degree right angle turn – his truck atilt – apparently rushing to merge into oncoming traffic that was nearly bumper to bumper across four lanes.
It was apparent to everyone that driver simply was taking the corner too fast. The combination of his refusal to slow down and the momentum of the oversize vehicle caused the truck to wobble and lean dangerously towards the next lane of traffic – hovering over a much smaller car beside it. For a moment it felt like time was standing still before an impending disaster. I believe the entire roadway of traffic collectively gasped and held their breaths – helpless to do much more and certain we were all to be witnesses to a traffic fatality accident as the truck teetered over the subcompact beside it.
Who knows why things happen the way they do – gravity may have been the factor on that truck driver’s side because after the truck completed the turn it bounced back and forth and finally came to a standstill ending right up and stopped without inflicting any damage to others around it.
There are many large truck accidents that occur each day in Houston and across the country. Many can be attributed to driver carelessness and a rash disregard for the drivers around them. I almost was witness to this very thing – and reconfirm my belief that one of my responsibilities is to remind drivers to drive defensively.
Greg Baumgartner is a Houston truck accident attorney and the founder of the Baumgartner law firm, which is dedicated to helping injury victims seek civil justice. For a free no obligation consultation with a personal injury lawyer in Houston call the Baumgartner firm.
The main cause of serious car accidents is distracted driving. That is a pretty bold statement however it is true. Distracted driving includes not only texting or cell phone use but also other distractions such as dealing with the radio, paperwork, maps or GPS devices or tending to children in the vehicle. Actually, the lists of things that can cause a driver to be distracted are almost endless.
The reality is that anything that takes your attention away from the roadway can lead to disaster. Everyone knows that it is very dangerous to text and drive and may have even heard of the studies comparing texting and driving to drunken driving as a major cause of accidents. What slips into cracks, however, are other distractions that can lead to a serious car crash.
If you need to consult your GPS find a place where you can safely pull off the road. This general rule should apply to almost any type of distraction, that is if you can safely put off the attention shifter and tell you can safely get off the road you will save yourself a lot of risk.
The main thing is that you recognize that distracted driving can be very dangerous and can jeopardize not only yourself but others as well.
Greg Baumgartner is a Houston wrongful death attorney and the founder of the Baumgartner law firm, which is dedicated to helping injury victims seek civil justice. For a free no obligation consultation with a Texas personal injury lawyer call the Baumgartner firm.
After 25 years in a Texas personal injury practice I am always amazed at what I read in statements produced by the defense in a personal injury case that were taken from the victims shortly after the accident. Some of the main reasons not to give a recorded statement are as follows:
- Confused as to the question–thus giving an answer less than helpful to your case.
- Making guesses as to time and distance that are inaccurate.
- Allowing the adjuster to ask leading questions helpful to his defense.
- Mistakenly believing that the statement will help their claim.
Many times adjusters are simply out to gather factual information and or not trying to do anything other than get the facts, other times adjusters are looking for avenues to deny or defend the claim. Some insurance adjusters are trained in methods to take statements that will be helpful to their defense of the claim.
If you did give a statement you would want to listen carefully to the question and answer it as clearly as possible without volunteering information. If it appears that your statement is being taken not to learn the facts but to defend the claim -terminate the interview and call a personal injury attorney.
With serious injuries the best approach is to speak with a reputable Texas personal injury attorney prior to giving a recorded statement with any insurance company.