With so many of the major media campaigns against distracted driving focused on cell phone use and texting, other causes of this dangerous action are often overlooked. The fact is that distracted driving means anything that causes a driver’s attention to be focused anywhere but the road, so it should be considered good news that police are now cracking down on other forms of distracted driving as a means of setting a nationwide example for all drivers that their priority is the safety of their passengers and the drivers sharing the roads with them.
A prime example of this crackdown by police officials and lawmakers actually came as the result of an accident involving a law enforcement officer. Last week, 18-year old Massachusetts resident Tia Grover was cited by Massachusetts state police for a variety of offenses after she struck state trooper Daniel Moran’s Crown Victoria patrol vehicle at an intersection. It was reported that Grover was approaching a flashing red light as Moran was passing through a flashing yellow light, giving him the right of way. However, Grover was allegedly distracted by a bag McDonald’s food between her legs.
Officers ultimately cited Grover for failure to yield to a traffic signal, failure to wear a seat belt, and impeded operation of a motor vehicle, which was tacked on with the allegation that she was eating food while driving. Reports of the accident fail to mention the severity – if any – of the injuries suffered by Grover or Moran, but both vehicles were towed because of excessive damage, .
This accident comes on the heels of the sentencing of a North Carolina woman who killed one female pedestrian and permanently injured another after she struck a curb and her vehicle was propelled into the two bystanders. The jury in that case declared the driver had not only been under the influence of marijuana and other drugs in the days leading up to the accident, but that she was also distracted by a cigarette, causing her to take her eyes off the road and ultimately change three lives forever.