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More states look at tackling distracted driving

According to TrueMotion, a company that works with insurance companies to monitor the behavior of drivers, around 18 percent of Louisiana motorists use their phones for apps and texting while behind the wheel. This is on the higher end for U.S. states. Like most other states, Louisiana prohibits texting while driving.

More states may start to ban any kind of handheld devices based on the apparent success of a law passed in Georgia that did so. In the first month after the law's passage, the use of apps and texting by drivers dropped by 22 percent. As of September 2018, deaths in motor vehicle accidents had declined 14 percent. Law enforcement reported that they planned to get more aggressive about enforcing the law.

Other states have followed suit. Rhode Island and Oregon have seen a drop in handheld phone usage after passing a similar law. Several other states, including Florida, Arizona and Minnesota, are considering doing so as well. However, even though some states are seeing a drop in the use of handheld phones and people appear to support initiatives to crack down on using phones while driving, Zendrive, another company that monitors driver behavior, says the incidence of distracted driving while on smartphones is getting worse.

When drivers cause car accidents because they are using their cellphones or are distracted in some other way and people are injured, they might be considered financially liable for expenses associated with those injuries. In some cases, the insurance company might pay for those expenses, but in other cases, the driver might be uninsured or the insurance company might make an offer that is inadequate. If this happens, it might be necessary to file a lawsuit. An attorney may be able to assist people who are injured in motor vehicle accidents.

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