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Some apps may help stop distracted driving

A lot of cellphone apps increase the risk of distracted driving. Drivers who are tempted to use the apps while behind the wheel spend less time looking at the road, which can lead to all manner of mistakes -- not stopping in time to avoid an accident, for example, or driving into the wrong lane.

However, some apps are designed specifically to help eliminate distracted driving. Below are a few examples of how this works:

1. DriveMode: This app simply shuts the phone down, blocking phone calls and text messages, while driving. It is best for drivers who are wise enough not to make calls or write messages on their own, but who may be tempted if one comes in from a friend who doesn't know he or she is driving.

2. Live2Txt: This is similar to the above, but it comes with one nice feature that can help your friends stay accountable, as well. If they text you, it will send them an automatic message to let them know you're in the car. This way, they know to wait to send any more messages until you contact them, and they don't worry about the lack of a response.

3. Wonder: This app works by telling those who are not driving what their contacts are doing. If you're thinking about texting someone, it will alert you to the fact that he or she is behind the wheel. This doesn't stop you from sending a message, but it does help you consider whether or not it's the best time for that message.

These apps can be helpful, but none are likely to totally eliminate distracted driving. This can be a huge issue for pedestrians in New Jersey, as they're already harder to spot and could be easily struck by distracted drivers. When this happens, they need to know how to seek compensation.

Source: Drivers Alert, "Can Apps Be the Solution to Distracted Driving?," Katie Bassett, accessed June 29, 2016

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