Florida Atlantic University professor, Dr. Daniel Raviv has developed a software app that can disable a cellphone from sending and receiving text messages when it’s in a vehicle moving. It only disables the phone is in the driver’s seat, not if it’s carried by a passenger. While stopping drivers from texting is important, it is just as important to stop all use of cellphones while driving. Talking on the phone – even hands-free – is an insidious danger that many assume is safe.

AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety’s study by David Strayer proved without a doubt that talking on a cellphone while driving, whether handheld or hands free, is ranked as a Category 2 distraction with moderate risk; and listening and responding to a voice-activated email while driving (like voice-activated texting) is a Category 3 distraction with extensive risk.

The National Safety Council has also released an important and powerful video about distracted driving called Calls Kill. Most people are under the mistaken impression that hands-free cell phone usage while driving is safer. Hands-free is not risk-free, the cognitive distraction, the most dangerous type of distraction, is exactly the same.

Distracted driving is an epidemic that steals lives. You could lose your life or take someone else’s if your brain is miles away texting or on a call.

While the temptation to be constantly connected to our phones increases, we can combat distracted driving with education and awareness. To that end, the Terrell Hogan Distracted Driving Awareness Campaign provides two free educational presentations to area teen and adult drivers. The presentation for teens, End Distracted Driving, was created by the Casey Feldman Memorial Foundation, and there’s one for adults called For the Workforce. Since 2012, 5,172 high school students and adults have seen the presen-tations. Click here to learn more about the presentations.

Every day, we at Terrell Hogan, represent victims of personal injury and wrongful death as they seek justice, but helping prevent accidents and injuries is also a constant focus. Lawsuits we have pursued for deserving victims have prompted safety changes, but that came after the accidents and injuries happened. We think it’s important to try to find ways to prevent injuries and wrongful deaths before they happen. That’s why we feel it’s important to help spread this life-saving word information about distracted driving.