News team catches truckers using cellphones while driving

New Jersey drivers may be interested in the results of a recent investigation by a New York City television station that looked into the prevalence of cellphone use among commercial truck drivers on New York's highways. It is apparently a widespread problem, according to the investigative team at WABC.

The team purportedly set up cameras beside a number of busy highways in the New York area to record the behavior of passing truck drivers. The investigators said that the footage reveals numerous truckers talking or texting on their cellphones as they drove. Reportedly, one driver can even be seen using two cellphones at the same time.

Law enforcement ticketed roughly 16,000 truck drivers in 2013 for using their cellphones while driving, according to the Department of Transportation. However, among those ticketed, only four were suspended or banned from trucking, the WABC investigative team said. In New York, talking on a cellphone while driving may result in a $150 fine if convicted.

Because distracted drivers are a common cause of automobile accidents on the state's roadways, New Jersey lawmakers have taken vigorous action against texting or talking on cellphones while behind the wheel. However, accidents involving large commercial vehicles are often catastrophic in nature; and when they are the result of distracted driving, the truckers and the companies that employ them may also be held responsible for their actions via a civil suit. Attorneys representing people who are injured in these accidents may file a personal injury lawsuit against the liable parties. Certain family members of people who are killed in these accidents may retain an attorney to help them file a wrongful death suit against the liable parties. Both forms of civil action may win financial compensation for damages suffered as a result of the truck accidents.