Distracted Driving Accidents
Help From Proven Sacramento Area Car Accident Lawyers
Distracted driving has become one of the nation’s most pressing public safety hazards, causing thousands of preventable injuries and deaths each year. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the problem is also getting worse, and is contributing to the largest spikes in roadway fatalities nationwide in decades.
At Caraway Injury Attorneys, our car accident lawyers fight for victims whose injuries and losses could and should have been prevented if not for the negligence of others, including drivers who chose distractions over safe driving. If you or someone you love has been harmed in a distracted driving wreck, our team is available to fight for the justice and compensation you deserve.
Discuss your auto accident case with a proven lawyer. Call (916) 655-5555 for a FREE consultation.
Distracted Driving: Dangerous in Any Form
Distracted driving refers to motorists who choose to engage in risky multi-tasking rather than making the safe operation of motor vehicle their primary and only task. Distraction and risky multi-tasking can take many forms:
- Text messaging and cell phone use
- Eating or drinking
- Reading, adjusting navigation systems, or adjusting music
- Conversing with passengers
- Personal grooming
Not only do these forms of distraction amount to negligence, and in some cases an illegal act, they show a clear disregard for others who can be injured or killed as a result. Fortunately, our civil justice system recognizes the negligence involved in distracted driving, and allows victims and families harmed by inattentive motorists to pursue legal action against the at-fault driver.
By illustrating how a driver was distracted at the time of a crash, how that distraction amounted to negligence (or driver’s a failure to uphold their legal duty to take reasonable measures in driving safely), and how victims suffered harm as a result of that negligence, our legal team can help victims hold distracted drivers accountable for their misconduct. Successful personal injury cases that establish fault can also ensure negligent drivers are held liable for victims’ damages, which may include their past and future medical expenses, lost work wages, pain and suffering, and more.
Texting & Cell Phone Use
Although distraction behind the wheel is dangerous in any form, few are as concerning as text messaging and using a cell phone. This is because cell phone use, and especially composing or reading text (via texting, e-mailing, or even web or app browsing), increase crash risks by as much as 23x, according to the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute. Such high crash risks are due to the fact that texting and using a cell phone commands multiple forms of a driver’s attention:
- Visual attention – When reading or composing a text, browsing an app or internet, or handling e-mail, drivers remove their eyes from the road. This prevents them from spotting critical situations that can lead to crashes, including slowed traffic or nearby pedestrians or bicyclists, and may cause them to run stop lights or signs, or fail to yield to other vehicles. Researchers have found that a driver who diverts their visual attention to a cell phone does so for an average of 5 seconds. Traveling at 55 mph, that’s equivalent to driving the length of a football field blindfolded.
- Manual attention – In addition to requiring driver’s to remove their eyes from the road, texting and cell phone use also commands their manual attention. Drivers may take one or even both hands off the road to navigate apps or compose a message, greatly limiting their reaction time and ability to maneuver their vehicle during crash-critical situations.
- Cognitive attention – Texting and any other form of cell phone use splits a driver’s attention from safely operating their vehicle with the task or conversation at hand. This creates dangerous inattention blindness, which can prevent motorists from seeing and responding appropriately to nearby traffic, signals, and signs.
Due to such overwhelming risks, California strictly prohibits text messaging and handheld cell phone use while driving. However, if you have ever traveled a public road in the Golden State, you are well aware that many motorists still choose to text or use their phone over their legal obligation of safely operating their vehicles. Drivers who do so can not only be cited for committing a traffic offense, but also held liable for damages suffered by victims in wrecks they have caused.
Discuss Your Case with a Great Sacramento Area Personal Injury Attorney
Distracted driving is a negligent act that places everyone on the road in danger, and victims harmed in distraction-affected crashes should never bear the burden of injuries, expenses, and losses they suffered through no fault of their own. By working with our proven legal team at Caraway Injury Attorneys, victims throughout the Greater Sacramento Area can benefit from the experience, support, and aggressive representation needed to ensure distracted motorists are held accountable, and to pursue the full amount of compensation to which they are entitled.
To discuss a potential car accident case involving a distracted driver, contact us for a FREE consultation.