Distracted driving can lead to a number of serious accidents—sometimes with fatal results. A few states have recently placed a new law in effect that bans drivers from being on their phone, whether to take a call or send a text, while they are operating a vehicle. The hope is that if people were to put down their phones, they would remain alert to their surroundings and drive safely. A recent incident in Maine is proving, however, that even if the driver isn’t the one holding the phone, they can still become distracted by the devices anyway. A man from Hampden, Maine lost control of his vehicle and crashed into a tree after he attempted to take a “selfie” with the passengers in his car. That’s right—he took his eyes off the road in an effort to squeeze himself into a picture that was being taken inside of the vehicle he was actively operating.
29 year old Jordan Toner has officially been charged with failing to maintain control of a car while being distracted following the incident that took place in Orient, Maine on Saturday. According to reports provided by Maine State Police, Toner lost control of his 2014 Mazda CX5 and crashed into a tree shortly after 1:30 PM. Jordan Toner was driving along Deering Lake Road with several passengers when one of his friends decided they wanted to take a “selfie”. Toner allegedly leaned over in an effort to join in the picture taking, and that was when he swerved off the road and into a nearby tree. Reportedly, two women were in the front seat beside Toner and neither of them had been wearing seatbelts at the time of the accident. The two women experienced the most serious injuries during the crash, with one suffering a fractured nose and facial lacerations and the other sustained neck and back injuries from the impact.
Reports have indicated that several of the passengers, who range in age from 28-35 years old, suffered minor injuries as a result of the accident. The extent and nature of their wounds has not been made available at this time.
The State Police officers in Maine issued a summons for Jordan Toner following the accident for a distracted driving charge. No word has been given yet on when Toner will face arraignment and what charges he may face. Reports also did not indicate whether Toner himself had become injured following the car accident on Saturday afternoon.
The circumstances surrounding this accident may seem a bit ridiculous, primarily because they are. The most important thing while driving is to remain focused and alert to your surroundings. Putting your phone away and keeping your eyes on the road are hugely significant in order to avoid accidents. In the case of the “selfie” incident, the injuries and side effects could have been even worse. If you are operating a vehicle, the safety of yourself and those around you should always be the top priority. As a busy Boston Car Accident law firm we continue to see a rise in the number of distracted driving accidents. Something has to be done to prevent these often senseless accidents, whether through tougher penalties. technology that locks smart phones once a vehicle is moving, or legislation prohibiting these actions.
Additional information may be found at the following links: http://bangordailynews.com/2015/08/30/news/aroostook/hampden-man-crashes-while-allegedly-taking-selfie/