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Kentucky State Police Raises Awareness on Distracted Driving

Young woman talking on a phone while driving.

Distracted driving is a factor in far too many serious and fatal car accidents. However, many motorists may not realize just how dangerous it really is. That's one reason why the Kentucky State Police are doing something to combat the problem and raise awareness about the issue by creating a driving simulator that shows how easily car accidents can happen when drivers aren't focused on driving.

"There's a world of difference when they're just driving and when they're texting and driving," Kentucky State Police Trooper Jonathan Houk said in an interview with ABC13 News. "They see how bad they drive here. We don't want them to text while they're out driving. We want them to do it here and realize how bad they do so they realize here and not out on the road when they wreck."

Distracted driving simulator used to send a strong message to young drivers in Kentucky

The driving simulator that Kentucky State Police officers bring to schools and other public places shows drivers how easily they can be distracted and cause an accident. According to an ABC13 News story about the simulator being brought by state police to a Kentucky high school, it "mimics a real-life driving experience and can utilize a variety of weather options, locations, levels of traffic, and times of day."

"You start it, shift it into drive, and then take off," Houk said. "You follow all the traffic safety regulations. You use your turn signal, look left and right, and then you just drive. I'll have passengers set up around them and we'll distract them, and I'll have a cell phone that I can text and make them answer it while they're driving."

"Schools and businesses can benefit from being aware of how sending a simple text message can impact the probability of a dangerous vehicular situation," according to the Kentucky State Police's website.

Distracted driving accidents in Kentucky

Unfortunately, collisions caused by distracted drivers in Kentucky are very common. Compared to other states, Kentucky is ranked 10th nationwide for the most distracted driving accidents, according to a Forbes study based on distracted driving accident data compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). An estimated 12.83 percent of all traffic fatalities in Kentucky are due to distracted driving accidents, the 10th highest percentage of any state in the country.

Here's another startling statistic – in 2022, nearly 39,000 car accidents in Kentucky were caused by distracted drivers, resulting in 134 traffic fatalities, according to the Kentucky Farm Bureau.

Kentucky's distracted driving laws

Like many states, texting while driving is against the law in Kentucky. Known as House Bill 415 and passed into law in 2010, drivers who text while driving in Kentucky can be fined $25 for the first violation and $50 for each subsequent violation. Penalty points can also be added to someone's driving record in Kentucky for texting while driving, according to the Kentucky Office of Highway Safety.

What to do if you're injured by a distracted driver

If you were injured in a crash involving a distracted driver, you might think you don't need a lawyer to help you seek compensation for your medical bills and other accident-related expenses. Unfortunately, many seemingly straightforward car accident claims quickly become complicated legal cases.

Sometimes, the at-fault driver denies doing anything wrong and tries to avoid responsibility for the crash. Other times, the at-fault driver's insurance company questions the severity of the injuries sustained or makes lowball settlement offers that don't come close to covering the full cost of the victim's losses.

Whatever the circumstances of your case, The Whaley Law Firm in Louisville, KY, can help you every step of the way. Attorney Aaron Whaley knows how to investigate car accidents and get to the bottom of what happened. He knows what evidence to look for and how to build a successful legal case.

Get a law firm that plays hardball with insurance companies. Contact us and schedule a free consultation to see how a Louisville car accident attorney can work toward building you a winning case.

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