Distracted driving is a growing problem in Oakland, San Jose, San Mateo and San Francisco as well as the rest of the state. Even though it is illegal to drive while reading, writing or sending a text message in California (and has been since January 1, 2009) countless people still do it.
Texting drivers cause many serious car accidents, pedestrian accidents, bicycle accidents and motorcycle accidents each year in the Bay Area and other parts of the state, which is why a local graphic designer decided to take the matter into his own hands.
The Bay Area resident kept noticing drivers in the area who were focusing on their cellphones instead of focusing on the road while driving, so he began taking pictures of them (while as a passenger, of course). He then uploaded the photos to a website he created in effort to raise awareness on the dangers of texting while driving.
The graphic designer then decided to purchase several billboards in San Francisco’s Mission District with his own money to expose the distracted drivers on an even more public forum. The project, as the graphic designer calls it, has garnered media attention from around the world. His website is called twitspotting.com, based on an acronym he created for “texting while in traffic.”
Although the graphic designer likely never had this use in mind when he created the website, it might be possible for the images he captured to be used as evidence in a personal injury lawsuit against a distracted driver.
Phone records are often used to help prove that a driver was texting or talking before causing an accident, but the photos could possibly provide even better evidence and are easily accessible to the public on the website.
Source: CBS News, “Billboards Aim To Expose Bay Area Drivers Texting Behind The Wheel,” Brian Webb, March 28, 2014