In 2018, 6,283 pedestrians were killed in traffic accidents. Pedestrian fatalities increased by 3% from 2017 to 2018.
Many of these accidents occur because drivers and pedestrians are not aware of their surroundings. As the use of electronic devices has increased, drivers and pedestrians are frequently using their cell phones instead of paying attention. For this reason, Wyoming adopted cell phone laws in an attempt to deter and punish distracted drivers.
If you suffered injuries caused by a driver on his or her cell phone, contact the Platte River Injury Law Firm for a free legal consultation.
Distracted Driving Definition: What Is It?
If you have ever used a cell phone while driving, you may not know that laws in Wyoming actually prohibit this.
Distracted driving, by definition, includes any activity that diverts attention from driving. Thus, distracted driving includes a wide variety of behaviors that we are all likely guilty of. Eating, daydreaming, and even changing the radio station are examples of distracted behaviors.
Cell phones are also a common method of distraction for drivers and even for pedestrians. In an effort to curb cell phone use while driving, laws prohibiting the practice have been passed nationwide.
Wyoming Cell Phone Laws
Though not all forms of distracted driving are illegal, Wyoming criminalized behavior it considers the most significant.
Wyoming law (WY Stat. § 31-5-237) criminalizes the use of a cell phone to read, write, or send text messages. There are limited exceptions, including:
- When your vehicle is lawfully parked;
- To contact emergency services;
- To dial a phone number to make a call; and
- When using hands-free technology.
Though Wyoming has no prohibitions on talking on a cell phone while driving, laws in other states and city ordinances have begun to criminalize that behavior as well.
Pedestrian Cell Phone Laws
There are no laws prohibiting a pedestrian’s use of a cell phone while walking near public roadways. Pedestrians are required to comply with traffic signals and to use crosswalks whenever one is available.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommends the following tips for pedestrian safety:
- Follow the rules and obey the signs;
- Use sidewalks when possible, and when they are unavailable, walk against the flow of traffic and stay as far away from vehicles as possible;
- Keep your eyes and ears on the road;
- Cross at crosswalks or intersections, and look for cars coming from all directions before crossing the street;
- Assume the driver cannot see you, and try to make eye contact with a driver to validate their awareness; and
- Avoid walking under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Following these suggestions can help reduce the number of pedestrian accidents.
Platte River Injury Law Can Help
If you suffered injuries that were caused by a driver who was texting, you may be entitled to compensation. Drivers that cause injuries by engaging in illegal behavior like texting and driving must be held accountable.
The pedestrian accident lawyers at Platte River Injury Law can help you do just that and hold those wrongful actors accountable.
Don’t struggle alone just to stay afloat. The personal injury team at Platte River Injury Law has years of experience fighting for the rights of our clients throughout Wyoming.
We are eager to help you obtain the maximum compensation that you deserve. So contact us today to see what we can do to help you recover.