Just when you thought things in America’s Litigious Society couldn’t get any weirder:
A New Jersey appeals court has found a person who knowingly sends a text to a driver can share liability if the driver causes an accident… The appeals court says someone who texts a motorist is not liable for the driver’s negligent actions. But the texter has a duty to refrain if the person knows the recipient is driving and likely to read the message.
No, we’re not making that up. However, the Associated Press, which reported on the case today, is perhaps overstating the meaning of the verdict. The fact that one judge on an appeals panel thinks that texters should be held liable for the crashes of their recipients seems a bit, um, F***ING INSANE, but more to the point it doesn’t seem to imply that such will always be the case. Legal beagles of the B&B are invited to chime in. You can read more here.
In the meantime, TTAC and its staff recommend that you do not “drive with your elbows while texting with your thumbs”. Learn to drive with your knee.
Just kidding. Do not, under any circumstances, drive with your knee.
It is critical that you pay full attention to the road at all times, even while stopped in motionless urban traffic for minutes at a time, but particularly while trundling down a road where the speed is artificially limited to a fraction of the safe possible velocity in order to enhance local violation revenue. Do not ever text or drive, even if the road is empty. A rabbit, or a child, or a Clydesdale horse could appear out of nowhere. Make sure you look straight ahead and do not use MyFordTouch or CUE. Particularly not CUE, because that thing sucks. It’s imperative that you face forward with your eyes open at all times. Do not blink. Consider being a productive doubleplusgoodthinking citizen and using public transportation instead. You can look at your iPad all you want and your chances of being raped by a fellow passenger range from slight (Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson) to virtually certain (any female under the age of fifty, not wearing a head-to-toe burlap sack).
This message has been brought to you by The Voice Screaming Inside Ray LaHood’s Skull.
(A tip of the hat to Miss Kat King for the link.)