Recently, we posted a great video from the National Safety Council detailing the risks of distracted driving. Deb Trombley, the Senior Program Manager of Transportation Initiatives at the NSC was nice enough to provide us with a link to the informative video above (Thanks Deb!), detailing company liabilities in case of an accident and what it takes to create an effective cell phone safety policy.
Here are some highlights from the video:
- Juries are currently reacting strongly to accidents caused by cell phones and often award very high damages in these cases. That means, any company without an enforced cellphone policy is at a high level of financial risk every day.
- Cell Phones are the primary risk factor for a driver behind the wheel simply due to the large amount of time people spend on their phones everyday.
- Hands-free devices are just as dangerous as hand held cell phones. The NSC has reviewed more than 30 hands-free device studies that prove they aren’t any safer since our brains are still distracted by the conversation.
- In order to fully protect your company and drivers, and help make the roads a safer place, NSC recommends a ban on hand held and hands-free devices for all employees, company vehicles, company cell phones and work related communications (even a personal cell phone in a personal vehicle)!
Without a cell phone policy that restricts the use of all mobile and hands-free devices, companies expose their workers to unnecessary crash risks as well as potentially crippling expenses to the company.
Examples of Cases Where Company was Liable:
- Texas: Jury finds a beverage company liable when a driver crashes while talking on a hands-free device. The employee was in line with the current company cell phone policy at the time. However, since someone was injured in the crash, the company was order to pay over $21 million dollars in damages.
- Arkansas: Lumber Distributor is found liable when a sales agent got into an accident with another vehicle while talking on a cell phone. One person was seriously injured, and the company was order to pay $16.1 million dollars in damages
- Ohio: Company driver crashed into another vehicle while using a cell phone and killed someone. With one person tragically dead, the company is ordered to pay $21.6 million dollars in damages.
To find out more information about the NSC, or to download the Cell Phone Safety Policy, click here.
What do you think about banning all devices behind the wheel in your company (even hands-free)! Think you could handle it? Let us know!