The decision is in; a woman who was being sued for sending a text message which caused the receiver of the message to get in an accident has been cleared by a New Jersey judge.
The story goes like this: On sept. 21, 2009, a nineteen-year-old man struck a couple on a motorcycle while texting behind the wheel of his car. The couple then attempted to sue the woman who was sending the messages to the man, saying that she was encouraging his distracted driving.
“Drivers are bombarded with all forms of distractions,” Judge David Rand told the courtroom. ”I find that there was no aiding, abetting here in the legal sense. I find it is unreasonable to impose a duty upon the defendant in this case under these facts. Were I to extend this duty, in my judgment, any form of distraction could potentially serve as basis of a liability case.”
The judge made the logical decision, because if the woman was legally tried for her actions, it would open up a whole new precedent in distracted driving cases. For example, someone could sue a cell phone company for offering a hand-held phone which can be operated in a car, or you could sue a fast food company for offering edible distractions.
The case is now closed, and the woman is cleared, but with the growing number of distracted driving cases coming up, it would be no surprise to see this argument raised again in the future.
[Source: ABC News]