New York drivers rank among top for selfies while driving

By now, everyone knows what a selfie is. Whether you love or loathe them, it's important to remember when it's safe to take one and when doing so may actually endanger your life as as well as the lives of others.

In light of a recent report, the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles is growing increasingly concerned about the number of drivers who are taking selfies while behind the wheel.

The Auto Insurance Center researched this disturbing trend through posts on Instagram, a popular social media site for photos. For the report, researchers looked at more than 70,000 Instagram posts with driving-related hashtags, such as #DrivingSelfie and the even more disturbing, #HopeIDontCrash. They also noted where the post originated. The information gathered went into a recently-issued report, detailing which states have the highest rate per 100,000 residents of drivers posting selfies.

The Auto Insurance Center also cites a frightening statistic by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. They say at any given moment during the day, 660,000 drivers are using a handheld cellphone, increasing the risk of serious injury, medical expenses, pain and suffering to all involved.

If you have been injured in a car accident and believe it involved a distracted driver, you may want to speak with a personal injury lawyer who can help determine if you should file a personal injury claim to recover compensation.

The laws in New York on using a cellphone while driving are clear. Under New York law, it is illegal for drivers to use a cellphone while driving. This includes talking on a handheld mobile phone, texting, emailing and "taking, transmitting or viewing images."

New York state’s rank at number eight in the nation for drivers taking selfies prompted city officials to issue a warning this week reminding drivers about the state’s distracted driver laws, as well as the dangers that using a cellphone while driving pose to themselves and others.

Source: New York State Department of Motor Vehicles, "New York state warns motorists about dangers of taking selfies while driving," Aug. 8, 2016.

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