Driving requires a driver’s full, undivided attention. It is not something someone can safely do while multitasking. Unfortunately, many drivers fail to understand or respect the dangers of distracted driving. It has become a more common problem on the roads of Arizona due to the increased use of personal electronic devices. In 2018 alone, distracted driving took 2,841 lives in the US, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
If a distracted driver caused your recent injuries or took a loved one’s life in an auto accident, contact Gerber Injury Law at (623) 486-8300 to request a free consultation. Our car accident attorneys have more than 22 years of experience assisting clients with all types of crash claims, including distracted driving accidents. We may be able to help you and your family hold the at-fault driver accountable for your damages.
To obtain financial compensation from a distracted driver, you may need to prove the other driver was not paying attention to the road. This can be difficult depending on the evidence available or lack thereof. Combined with bad faith tactics by the other driver’s insurance company, you may struggle to prove your case and obtain fair compensation. Hiring a lawyer can solve these problems.
A lawyer will have professional training in how to determine fault and prove negligence. A lawyer will also have experience dealing with insurance companies. Tasks such as collecting evidence, speaking to insurance claims adjusters, and arguing for fair compensation are easier with an attorney’s assistance. Your car accident lawyer can handle your distracted driving claim for you while you focus on recuperating.
Distracted driving is a type of driver negligence that involves the failure to pay attention to the road or driving task. When anything distracts a driver, even marginally, it compromises the driver’s ability to safely control the vehicle. This can lead to collisions based on inattention and delayed response times. Many common things can cause distracted driver accidents in Arizona.
Driver distractions can be cognitive (taking the driver’s mind off of the driving task), manual (removing the driver’s hands from the wheel), or visual (moving the driver’s eyes off of the road). Cellphones are the most dangerous form of driver distraction because they combine all three types. The NHTSA states that looking at just one text at 55 miles per hour is the equivalent of driving the distance of a football stadium blindfolded.
Distracted driving is a crime in Arizona if the driver breaks the state’s cellphone laws. Arizona’s Hands Off Law makes it illegal to use a cellphone to talk or text if the device is in the driver’s hands. Using a cellphone is only permissible if the device is in a hands-free mode. No driver may hold a device in his or her hands, read or write text messages, scroll through social media, or use cellphones in other capacities without hands-free technology in Arizona.
A traffic offense is not the same as civil liability for an auto accident involving a distracted driver. In Arizona, a distracted driver could face both criminal and civil liability for a wreck. A traffic ticket for texting while driving could mean fines of $75 to $250 for the driver. Civil liability for a related car accident, however, could lead to the driver’s insurance company paying crash victims thousands of dollars in compensation. It is up to you, not prosecutors, to file a civil claim against a driver for distracted driving.
Compensation for a distracted driving car accident refers to the money damages you could receive to make you whole again after a serious crash. It can include payments for your vehicle repairs, lost wages, travel expenses, past and future medical bills, and pain and suffering. In general, the insurance company of the distracted driver will have to pay these damages if you or your lawyer can prove fault.
Establishing fault during a distracted driving accident claim requires evidence that the distracted driver owed you a duty of care, breached this duty by driving distracted, and caused your car accident. A lawyer from Gerber Injury Law could help you prove fault through evidence such as the driver’s cellphone records or eyewitness accounts. We know what evidence and demonstrations insurance companies (as well as jurors) respond to the most.
You must file a car accident insurance claim as soon as possible after your collision. Otherwise, the distracted driver’s insurer may use delayed filing as a reason to deny benefits. Most companies require initial reporting within 24 to 72 hours of the accident. If the distracted driver disputes fault and your case needs to proceed to court for fair compensation, you have a maximum time limit (statute of limitations) of two years from the date of your accident to file. Do not hesitate to contact Gerber Injury Law right away after a serious car accident to make sure you meet your deadline.
Attorney Ken Gerber cares about the people in his community. The clients he represents become like family. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident involving a distracted or negligent driver, please do not hesitate to contact us to speak to our attorneys. We may be able to help you hold the distracted driver accountable and obtain full compensation for your damages. Call (623) 486-8300 today to request a free consultation near you.