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In our modern age, distracted driving accidents occur at higher rates. These accidents, unfortunately, claim thousands of lives and cause millions of injuries each year. In fact, distracted driving accidents have officially surpassed the number of accidents caused by drunk driving. State legislatures across the nation are considering and implementing laws that would criminalize and hold liable a driver engaged in distracted driving. Whether a distracted driver is operating a car, commercial vehicle, school bus, tour van or train, it is their responsibility to remain alert and aware of the road, using sound judgment to avoid any distractions that may cause physical harm to pedestrians and other motorists.

While the majority of distracted driving accidents occur due to cell phone usage, there are a variety of incidents that can account for distracted driving accidents. Diverting attention to children, pets, environment or roadside attractions or events significantly increases the risk of an accident. Motorists and pedestrians involved in distracted driving accidents are frequently entitled to recover damages for medical bills, lost wages or emotional injuries. If you’ve been involved in a distracted driving accident, it’s essential to work with a knowledgeable Los Angeles car accident attorneys can investigate these claims on your behalf, finding the relevant facts and arguing for harsher penalties under the law. 

What is Distracted Driving? Our Los Angeles Car Accident Attorneys Explains

Advances in technology have certainly made our lives easier, but they’ve also increased opportunities to get distracted or lose sight of an important task at hand. Today’s smartphones, tablets and other technological gadgets have become an incredible source of distraction for motorists of all ages and experience levels. However, distracted driving accidents can occur for any number of reasons.

Rushing out the door, driving in a hurry or paying more attention to your devices than the road can all cause distracted driving accidents. Some potential causes include:

  • Adjusting the radio
  • Texting or emailing
  • Talking on the phone
  • Using a navigational system
  • Watching a video
  • Reading
  • Chatting with or minding passengers, particularly children and pets
  • Reaching for an object
  • Eating or drinking
  • Personal grooming

How Common is Distracted Driving?

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) offers some chilling insights into just how frequently distracted driving accidents occur. In 2017 alone, distracted driving accidents caused approximately 3,166 fatalities, and resulted in countless other injuries. 

Cell Phone Accidents

In most states, including California, driving while operating a cell phone is illegal. Unless there is an emergency, motorists are required to ignore their cell phones while behind the wheel, refraining from making calls or texts, writing or reading emails or checking their social media accounts. In some states, however, drivers are permitted to use a hands-free system to use their cell phones. A hands-free system is defined as a device that allows the driver to mount the phone on their windshield or dashboard, enabling the driver to answer or hang up their cell phones with a single swipe or tap. Likewise, drivers under the age of 18 are often prohibited from using their cell phones while driving, as these drivers lack experience behind the wheel. 

Texting and Driving

The advent of technology has brought on a slew of complications for motorists on the road, and texting and driving is the single most dangerous practice facing drivers today. National distracted driving statistics registering injuries and fatalities caused by texting and driving are a sobering reminder that stricter laws need to be in place. Distracted drivers who are texting and driving, in turn, must be held liable for the physical and emotional damage they cause. Our Los Angeles car accident lawyer can help you pursue just compensation from the distracted driver. Call us today.

Consider the following shocking statistics:

  • 64 percent of car accidents involve motorists who were texting and driving.
  • 78 percent of all distracted drivers were found to have been distracted because they were texting and driving.
  • 1 out of 4 car accidents occurs due to texting and driving.
  • Texting and driving are six times more likely to cause an accident than drunk driving.
  • Texting and driving increases the risk of an accident by up to 23 times.
  • 33 percent of drivers aged 18 to 64 report they were texting and driving at some point in the past month.

Can You Be Held Liable for Texting and Driving in California?

Texting and driving laws were created to curb this dangerous, widespread practice. In many instances, a driver who is found to be texting and driving could be held strictly liable for any injuries or accidents resulting from their negligence. In courts across the United States, drivers have been held responsible and liable for texting and driving and were required to cover the cost of damages for injured parties. Working with Los Angeles car accident attorneys can help you determine whether a driver should be held liable for texting and driving. 

Potential Recovery for Distracted Driving Accident Victims

Distracted driving injuries often cause physical and emotional damage and in some instances, even result in death. Motorists or pedestrians involved in distracted driving accidents may be able to recover for a variety of legal claims, including:

  • Lost wages and income
  • Loss of future earnings
  • Pain and suffering
  • Past and future medical bills
  • Future medical and rehabilitation costs
  • Emotional distress
  • Wrongful death

How Is It Determined Whether a Driver Was Distracted?

Motorists are expected to employ reasonable measures to avoid roadway accidents. Being distracted while driving can be considered negligence and as such, require liable drivers to make reparations to injured parties. To prove negligence in a California distracted driving lawsuit, courts require evidence that demonstrates that a driver was distracted and caused a car accident. 

In order to determine whether a driver is liable for distracted driving, Los Angeles car accident attorneys will conduct a thorough investigation to uncover evidence. Evidence of liability may include:

  • Police reports that detail suspicions of cell phone use
  • Whether there were multiple passengers in the vehicle that could have caused a distraction
  • Cell phone records demonstrating text messaging and phone call logs
  • Photographs of the scene
  • Admission from the driver
  • Surveillance video that documents the accident
  • Witnesses who are willing to testify about distracted behaviors

Work With Our Los Angeles Car Accident Attorneys to Recover Losses from Distracted Driving Accidents

Our law firm routinely handles lawsuits involving distracted driving accidents. We work hand-in-hand with our clients to conduct thorough investigations of the facts, deal with law enforcement and insurance companies and navigate your rights under the law. Call our skilled accident attorneys immediately after an accident to ensure you have guidance, assistance and advice throughout the recovery process. 

Contact us today and schedule your FREE consultation.

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