California is among the vast majority of states with some form of anti-distracted driving law in place, but motorists continue to use their cellphones while driving, especially teen drivers.
Traffic tickets and public-service campaigns explaining the risk that distracted driving poses may have had some effect, but distracted drivers are still a big problem, not just in Los Angeles, about across the country.
Perhaps a new approach to the problem would work. Instead of discouraging teens from driving while distracted, maybe it would work better to use something to motivate them to keep their phone put away until they reach their destination.
That is the thinking behind a new smartphone app called Down for the Count. The app rewards users the longer they spend on the road without turning on their phone. Once the user reaches a certain number of hours, he or she qualifies for a gift card of his or her choice, according to Tuscon.com.
Though anybody can sign up for Down for the Count, the app is targeted towards teens, with parents paying for about a sixth of the gift cards so far. As the company expands, its owner hopes to partner with insurance companies and other sponsors to help pay for the rest of the cards.
It is possible that greed will overcome a lack of focus and teach young drivers to take traffic safety seriously. But unfortunately, you may not be able to avoid getting hit by a distracted driver the next time you are on the road. If this happens, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries.