Driver distraction and suspected drugged driving are being blamed for setting the stage for a fatal head-on collision between a car and an SUV in the northwestern corner of Charlotte, North Carolina (NC). The fatal wreck occurred near the intersection of Mt. Holly Road and Chattaroy Drive on the night of June 7, 2015.
The woman behind the wheel of the car admitted to police that she was using her phone to send texts immediately before leaving her lane and crashing into the larger vehicle. The person driving the SUV lost control, rolled over into a ditch, became entrapped and lost his life before getting transported to a hospital for treatment. Neither speed nor alcohol appears to have played roles in causing the wreck, but it remains unclear whether the texting, distracted driver had taken any of the many narcotics found in her possession in quantities large enough to draw charges of intent to distribute.
Impairment by drugs may not have been necessary to create the unsafe, and ultimately fatal, scenario. Research has shown that texting behind the wheel can be even less safe than driving under the influence. Taking one's eyes and mind off the road for even a second can prove deadly; texting distracts drivers for significantly longer periods.
North Carolina law prohibits all people from texting while driving. Doing so is a ticketable offense even when a person commits no other moving violation or criminal offense. The woman who caused the deadly head-on crash in Charlotte may or not have done more than texting, but that seems to have been enough to take a life.