Texting Blocked on iPhones for Drivers?

Distracted Driving in New Jersey. Texting Blocked on iPhones. New Jersey Injury LawyersNew Jersey Distracted Driving

What happens when you are driving along the roads of New Jersey and your phone dings with a notification or message? Do you resist the urge to check it? Unfortunately, many people are not resisting the temptation of their iPhones and the numbers of accident-related injuries and deaths from distracted driving are climbing.

Do you ever see other drivers staring endlessly at their phones and wonder if they might actually be watching a whole movie as they navigate through traffic on the NJ Turnpike?

Do you ever see other drivers typing like crazy on their phones and think they are trying to do their taxes as they swerve along the Garden State Parkway?

As the matinee motorists enjoy their movie and the automobile accountants crunch their numbers, all of us driving on the roads of New Jersey are being put in harm’s way.

Apple is trying to do something about it.

iPhone to Block Texting?

With the increased number of car accidents, truck accidents and pedestrian accidents caused by distracted driving, the pressure has been put on both smartphone makers and auto manufacturers to come up with solutions. With that in mind, Apple has announced a plan that they hope will cut down on the number of distracted drivers.

The new feature is called “Do Not Disturb While Driving” and it will be launched as part of Apple’s iOS 11 upgrade in the coming months. With this new feature, the phone will withhold any notifications for things like text messages, instant messages and news updates. It will be active whenever the car is moving and an iPhone is connected using a cable or via Bluetooth.

“Do Not Disturb While Driving” will still allow users to send automatic text replies telling those trying to contact them that they’re driving and unable to respond.

Apple’s Do Not Disturb While Driving – Will it Help?

As New Jersey Accident Lawyers, we have represented clients that have been involved in serious car and truck accidents where distracted driving has played a role. These clients have endured major injuries ranging from broken bones and back injuries to severe burns and traumatic brain injuries.

Many victims of distracted driving accidents endure a great deal of pain and suffering, both physical and mental. These victims often face financial hardships from the medical expenses that pile up. These financial hardships are compounded further when these victims are also dealing with lost wages from being unable to work due to their accident injuries.

In some cases, seriously injured accident victims are faced with permanent disability or disfigurement…and of course, many accident victims aren’t even that “lucky,” with the NHTSA estimating there were 3,477 fatalities in 2015 because of distracted driving.

As we at Mintz & Geftic often see first-hand the dangers caused by distracted driving and the effects these crashes have on injured victims, we view any step to cut down on this epidemic as a positive step. If this new feature can save lives and reduce the number of major injuries that result from distracted driving, then yes it will definitely help.

“Do Not Disturb While Driving” – The Loophole

We acknowledge this new feature from Apple is clearly a step in the right direction, However, one thing not highlighted by many announcements we have seen in the news, is that this new feature will come with a passenger override option. While we’ll see the specifics when the software rolls out, it sounds like the motorist will simply be able to select this override option and continue texting and driving as they please.

Again, Apple should get credit for starting to get drivers to focus on the road. However, we all know that drivers that are determined to use their phones on the road will still do so if given the option.

What do you think?

Stay tuned to our blog for updates on this important issue.

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