Anyone who has been in or seen a life-changing car accident knows just how devastating these events can be. Some of the worst accidents, in fact, are vastly due to distracted driving. Texting and driving accidents, amongst a few other deadly distractions, cause nearly 330,000 injuries each year in the United States, with over 3,000 traffic fatalities in just 2016, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
In just a split second, a person’s entire life can be turned upside-down. Even if a driver looks away from the road for only a brief moment, an accident can occur within 4.6 seconds, noted by the NHTSA in a recent study. Texting and driving is dangerous no matter how quickly you check your phone and lean towards the center console to see who texted you. Here are 5 tragic texting and driving accidents that will change your mind about texting behind the wheel, according to the car accident attorneys at the Utah Advocates:
Texting Crash That Killed Byron Teen
In 2012, Deianerah Logan, of Byron, Minnesota, tragically lost her life in a bus accident on her way home from school. Police say Ms. Logan was texting and driving when she crashed into the back of a stopped school bus. Logan was heading home from the first day of her senior year of high school when the accident occurred.
In her parent’s minivan, Logan began driving home when she glanced down at her phone to draft a text message. Her vehicle was going 63 miles per hour at the time when she crashed into the back of a stopped bus, according to accident investigators. Logan was found unconscious when paramedics arrived.
Her father, Matt, who was also out driving that day just so happened to pass by the accident, seeing the mangled vehicle in the distance. Sensing his daughter’s involvement, police confirmed her father’s suspicions that it was in fact true one of his five children had lost their life.
Single-Word Text Disfigures Maryland Driver
On April 7, 2012, only two weeks before her 18th birthday, Liz Marks received a single-word text message and drove her car into the back of a flatbed truck. Liz was driving her Mazda 3 when she received a text message from her mother, reading “OK.” She looked down and glanced at the message and drove right into the bed of a stopped truck.
Liz was airlifted to the University of Baltimore Shock Trauma Center. First responders were not expecting her to survive. Liz suffered a traumatic brain injury as well as facial trauma that required reconstructive facial surgery. She was left blind in one eye, lost some of her hearing, cannot smell, create tears or even sleep without taking medication.
What distressed her the most was watching friendships slowly disappear, as they went off to college and started new lives, and she could not. Today, Liz carries her story wherever she goes and a strong no texting while driving message that she will stand by for the rest of her life.
Father of 3 Killed in a Texting Accident
A father of three children was tragically killed in a head-on collision due to a texting accident. Daniel Bowley, Jr., 55, was casually driving down a Massachusetts highway back in 2011 when he was struck head-on by another vehicle. The other driver, Aaron Deveau, 17, came racing toward him with his phone in-hand. Deveau’s vehicle came speeding across the center line and hit Bowley’s car head-on.
Bowley’s girlfriend was in the passenger seat of the car at the time of the crash and suffered a broken leg. Bowley did not survive the crash.
According to Massachusetts officers, Deveau told them he did not remember sending a text message at the time he lost control of the vehicle. But his phones records showed otherwise, reporting that 192 texts were sent that day leading right up to the crash, a final message saying, “Seeya soon.”
Deveau was eventually found guilty of motor vehicle homicide and negligent operation of a motor vehicle that caused serious injuries while driving. While his sentence was reduced to only 2.5 years, nothing can change the fact that the children of Daniel Bowley Jr. will never see their father again.
16-Year-Old Causes Fatal Wreck While Texting
A 16-year-old girl from Kansas City, Missouri struck and killed a 72-year-old woman who had her granddaughter in the backseat of the car. Rachel N. Gannon was apparently looking at her phone when her vehicle quickly began to swerve off the road. In an attempt to drive back into her lane, she overcorrected and smashed right into the front of Loretta Larimer’s car.
Gannon was reportedly driving recklessly with her phone in-hand and loud music blasting through the stereo when she crashed into Larimer’s vehicle. Gannon did not suffer serious injuries from the crash. But Ms. Larimer needed to be cut out of her Nissan Ultima, while her 10-year-old granddaughter witnessed the entire accident from the backseat of the car. The child did not suffer any major injuries, but her grandmother later died at a nearby hospital.
At first, the family of Ms. Laramer wanted to show leniency to a teen who made a tragic mistake. But after the teen was caught violating her probation by drinking and partying with friends, a Missouri judge sentenced her to three years and six months in prison.
Deadliest Texting and Driving Accident in Texas
Known as one of the most fatal texting and driving accidents in Texas State history, this particular accident involved a driver who was previously seen swerving recklessly down a highway before the heartbreaking crash occurred. In fact, another driver who saw the man driving the pickup truck called 911 and even recorded his behavior on video. Unfortunately, the police were unable to catch up to the speeding driver before he caused one of Texas’s most tragic accidents.
Twenty-year-old Jack Young was driving down the highway in a large white pickup truck when he slammed into a bus of 14 elderly people in March of 2017. Young lost control of the vehicle while texting and swerved right into the bus’s lane, crashing into the vehicle head-on. 13 people on that bus died because of the accident, only one person surviving. Jack Young also survived and is currently serving the remainder of his 55 years in prison.
Injured in a Texting and Driving Accident? The Advocates Are On Your Side.
Texting and driving accidents can be avoided. If you or a loved one have recently been injured in a texting and driving accident, you will need an Advocate on your side to help ensure the driver pays for their negligent and irresponsible behavior.
The car accident lawyers at the Advocates have helped car crash victims recover what they are rightfully owed since 1993. We will work with you every step of the way in gaining fair compensation for your pain and suffering. Don’t wait to call our Ogden, Salt Lake City, or American Fork office today. You can contact us at 801-326-0809 or use our live chat here to speak with an attorney right away.