Live streaming on social media outlets such as Facebook and Instagram have been all the rage since their release back in 2015. Participants are able to share videos of concerts, events, and funny anecdotes in real time instantly with family and friends, without the hassle of a separate uploading process.
What was not the intention of these enhanced features is the broadcasting of harmful pranks, felony crimes, and murders/deaths that are increasingly filling news feeds of social media users.
• This past summer, an 18-year-old woman was live streaming on Instagram while driving drunk in her car near Los Bonos, California. Also in the car were two 14-year-olds passengers; her sister and her sister’s friend. Neither one of the younger teens were wearing a seatbelt when the driver lost control, rolled the car, and crashed into a fence, ejecting both passengers from the vehicle. The driver captured the crash and the aftermath of the accident on video, instantly streaming to the online community. Sadly, her sister was killed in the accident, while her friend sustained serious injuries.
• In the winter of 2016, two teenage girls were tragically killed while live streaming a video on Facebook and driving on a Pennsylvania highway. With their focus on the phone, a semi-truck barreled into the back of the car, instantly killing both teens upon impact. The truck driver was unharmed.
If you think live streaming is only abused by teens, we are sorry to report its an issue among people of many ages.
• Last winter, a 20-year-old man was driving at speeds up to 116 miles an hour in Rhode Island, all while live streaming the joy ride for friends on Facebook. The video shows the car dangerously swerving in and out of lanes before it ended abruptly due to the car crashing into a garbage truck. The driver sustained serious injuries and his car was mangled from the accident. Luckily, the truck driver sustained no injuries.
• In July 2017, a 27-year-old man was drinking and driving, while live streaming himself being chased by police! In the live video, the driver can be seen drinking whiskey, while driving on Clearwater beach among several beachgoers running to safety. Thankfully, no pedestrians were injured and the driver was taken into police custody after surrendering when driving to a dead-end.
These incidents are only a few of the many accidents and deaths that have resulted in people live streaming while driving. Distracted driving is already out of control, yet live streaming is taking drivers to a whole new terrifying level of distraction.
It is illegal in most states to use hand-held phones while driving, so some individuals are mounting phones for ‘safer’ live streaming. This method is still not effective, as the phone continues to grab your attention off the road while you’re concentrated on the subject of the video.
The safest way to live stream yourself while driving- there is none!
Live streaming while driving is reckless and dangerous. It doesn’t matter if you are filming an accident, a crime, or a car karaoke session; live streaming while driving can cause serious injury and death to you, your family members, and others around you. If you MUST live stream in your car, save the videos for when you are safely parked in a lot or your driveway, but never while the car is moving or on the road.
If you or a loved one has been seriously injured or killed by a distracted driver, our team is here for support. Contact our winning legal team, Siler & Ingber, at 877.529.4343 for a free, confidential legal consultation to learn more about your options.