When the Employee-Driver Uses Mobile Phone, Companies Take the Heat
As Ashley Halsey III reports for the Washington Post, companies that in some way or another condone their drivers' use of mobile phones or other devices while behind the wheel are facing lawsuits by those who are injured (or the families of those who are killed) in distracted-driving-related accidents.
Texting while driving and talking on a cell phone are said to cause two million accidents per year, according to the National Safety Council.
Halsey refers to cell phone records as the "smoking gun" that turns lawsuits into relatively quick settlements for companies (and their insurers) facing liability for drivers who use mobile devices while behind the wheel.
We're talking multi-million dollar settlements, here, which is sending a strong message to companies that distracted driving will not be tolerated. In one state, in fact, distracted driving outranked drunk driving in terms of what scares people most when it comes to driving.
As Halsey reports, the National Safety Council said, "If an employer knew a behavior in some other aspect of the business put employees at four-times-greater risk of injury, would they still expect or even encourage that behavior?"
Source: Cell use at wheel creates liability