Doug / 06-04-2012 / Car Accident

Companies Should Ensure Their Own Cell Phone Policies are ‘Real Thing’ After Coca-Cola Verdict

Many of us are aware of the risks and penalties inherent in driving while intoxicated, but driving while “intexticated” is every bit as dangerous. The video above effectively demonstrates the difficulty the average driver might have in acquiring a driver’s license if the test required him or her to pass a texting test at the same time. A number of recent cases demonstrate that the dangers of texting while driving could now have far-reaching effects for employers with employees who are involved in car crashes caused by cell phone-related distractions.

Coca-Cola is one of the most recognized brands in the world, but the soft drink manufacturer’s cell phone policy for its delivery drivers was called “vague and ambiguous” by the attorneys for a woman recently awarded $21 million by a Texas jury. Vanice Chatman-Wilson’s automobile was struck by a Coca-Cola employee driving a company-owned vehicle, and the employee was talking on a cell phone at the time of the accident. The company issued a statement clarifying that the driver, Araceli Vanessa Cabral, works in a sale role and was driving a car, not a delivery driver operating a truck. Coca-Cola said it planned to appeal the ruling, but companies across the country should still be taking note of the verdict. Without a solid cell phone policy for employees, it is likely that Coca-Cola will not be the last corporation on the hook for an employee causing a distracted driving accident.

On Friday, we will discuss some of the specific things that companies need to keep in mind when creating a cell phone policy.

Wooten Kimbrough, P.A. – Orlando personal injury lawyers

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