New Technology Helps Bust Distracted Drivers
Cobb County Police have high hopes for new technology that will be able to catch distracted drivers. As mentioned in a report released by Channel 2 Action News, a device known as the “textalyzer,” can assist in determining whether or not drivers involved in an accident were distracted prior to the collision. The textalyzer can also analyze if a driver was texting, using social media or taking photos almost immediately after the collision upon visiting the accident site. This innovative technology can help law enforcement officials solidify evidence necessary to prosecute distracted driving offenders. The textalyzer is pioneer in cracking down on those who choose to text and drive in a time when there is an alarmingly high rate of injuries and deaths caused by distracted drivers.
In a way, the textalyzer is like a breathalyzer. Instead of determining one’s BAC, the device measures cell phone usage though apps, messaging or photos. The textalyzer was developed by Cellebrite, an Israel-based company that creates products for data extraction, transfer and analysis of mobile devices. In the same report from Channel 2, Cellebrite CEO of forensic technology, Jim Grady, said that the textalyzer reveals when a phone was active and logs activity to reveal if a driver was paying attention to the road prior to an accident. By tracking mobile device usage, it will be easier to prosecute and punish those who drive while distracted, similar to how an individual would be disciplined for driving under the influence.
The invention of the textalyzer comes in an era when texting and driving poses such high rates of danger for both offenders and fellow drivers. According to the DMV’s website, nine people are killed with over 1,000 injuries daily due to distracted driving related incidents. Texting and driving can increase your chance of crashing by 46%. In the State of Georgia, texting and driving is prohibited and can be punishable by a fine and points against the offender’s driving record. However, detecting whether or not one was texting is still a difficult task as a person can only be charged with an offense if an officer caught the driver in the act.
Several Congressmen have spoken out in favor of the use of this device and some have already written bills to legalize it, including Tennessee State Senator Lee Harris. Despite high levels of support for the device, some critics feel as if the “textalyzer” is an invasion of privacy. In an article published by NBC News this past summer, Cellebrite assured that the device does not record or extract personal content or information and solely detects mobile device movements and usage.
As of now, the textalyzer is merely a prototype. Several states, including New York, Tennessee and Illinois are in the process of creating and approving legislations for the device. While there are no present legislations in Georgia regarding the textalyzer, Georgia Congressman John Carson says that the implementation of the device is definitely in consideration. As stated by Channel 2, device manufacturer Cellebrite confirmed that the textalyzer will undergo mass production after states declare it legal.
The textalyzer can make a real impact on holding distracted drivers accountable for their actions. However, as it is still a change in the making, we as drivers must continue to always be alert on the roads and pay attention to protect ourselves and others. If you or a loved one has suffered a personal injury from a car accident due to a distracted diver, contact one of our attorneys at Schneider Hammers today. We are committed to holding distracted drivers responsible for their actions and earning you the compensation you deserve.