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North Carolina distracted driving law: does anybody care?

The U.S. has a patchwork of laws regarding distracted driving. Experts agree that using a cell phone (or any other electronic device) while driving is dangerous for the distracted motorist and everybody around them. But traffic law is mostly left up to state regulators and legislatures, and different states have taken different action against the distracted driving crisis.

Here in North Carolina, it is against the law to text and drive -- while your vehicle is in motion. You can get pulled over if a police officer notices you texting and driving. However, it is legal to type or read text messages if your car is stopped or parked. The law also allows talking on the phone, except for drivers under age 18.

The law in other states

Many states go further with total bans on texting and driving or complete cell phone bans behind the wheel. Then there are states with no distracted driving laws at all or limited to minor drivers and school bus drivers only.

Survey says...

If you were hoping that the prohibition has affected North Carolinians' driving behavior, a survey by AAA might be troubling. According to WFMY, nearly all the 2600 drivers surveyed -- 97 percent -- agreed that texting and driving is dangerous. But 35 percent admitted that they do it anyway.

If one in three drivers admit they text and drive, you can be sure that the rate is actually higher. If you have been seriously injured in a crash caused by a distracted driver, you could be entitled to full compensation for your pain and suffering, medical bills and other damages.

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