Houston Distracted Driving Attorney
Car crashes can happen in a variety of ways. One common cause, though, is distracted driving, which is as simple as inattention. Distracted driving occurs when a driver diverts their attention away from driving by any number of things. When a driver takes their eyes off the road, their hands off the wheel, or their mind off the task of driving, they are engaging in distracted driving. While common, engaging in distracted driving is unsafe and even illegal in some states, including Texas. Have you been injured in a car accident caused by a distracted driver? If so, contact a Houston distracted driving accident attorney today to understand your rights to compensation.
Types of Distractions
There are several types of distracted driving:
- Manual distractions. This is when a driver takes their hands off the wheel, making loss of control a possibility. Common distractions include texting, talking on the phone, eating, drinking, grooming, and changing the radio station.
- Visual distractions. This is when a driver takes their eyes off the road, making it difficult for them to see hazards in the road. Visual distractions may include reading texts, looking at a map, looking at passengers, or looking in the mirror.
- Cognitive distractions. These distractions take a person’s mind off the task of driving. They may include focusing on a phone conversation, tending to children or pets, or focusing on other issues, such as an argument with a spouse or worrying about a child.
Some scientists have compared distracted driving to drunk driving—the effects are that severe.
How to Prove Distracted Driving
Driving while distracted is a type of negligence, and motorists are legally liable to accident victims when their negligence causes injuries. But how do you actually prove distracted driving? You can be sure that the other driver isn’t eager to admit they were texting or fiddling with other electronic devices in the moments before colliding with you.
At the West Law Office, we’ve developed techniques over the years for proving cases. One thing we can do is talk to you about what you remember about the accident. Did the driver exit the vehicle holding his phone? That’s a good sign he was talking or texting before hitting you. Other witnesses might have seen the driver distracted or swerving in the lead up to a collision.
We can also request cell phone records if we suspect texting and driving. These records will show definitively when the driver was on the phone in the seconds before the collision.
Shared Responsibility and Distracted Driving
Distracted driving is so common that it’s not unusual that the other driver will blame you for also being distracted. What happens if that’s true?
Under Texas law, you can share responsibility for the accident by being negligent yourself. This will have dramatic consequences for your case. For example, if you are more than 50% responsible, you will lose the ability to get any compensation and will walk away with nothing. That’s a severe result.
If you are less than 50% to blame, you can still sue. But your compensation gets reduced proportionally by your degree of fault. So you could take home much less than you deserve. This is why it is vital that you not drive in a negligent manner yourself.
Get the Compensation You Deserve
We seek fair compensation from distracted drivers and their insurers for your injuries. For example, we have sought money to cover:
- Medical care, past and future
- Lost income, past and future
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional trauma
- Damage to your vehicle or other property
Many questions swirl around how much you can receive from a distracted driver. The main consideration is the severity of your injuries. The more serious the injuries, the more pain and inconvenience you will feel. Serious injuries typically require more medical care as well. To help us calculate the value of your claim, hold onto medical bills and receipts. Share proof of income and the number of days you couldn’t work as you recuperated. We will use this information to bolster your claim for a fair settlement.
How to Avoid Distracted Driving
It can be hard to stay focused on the road while driving, but distracted driving is avoidable. Here are some things you can do to avoid distractions:
- Leave on time. When you’re running late, you’re more likely to finish grooming and dressing in the car, which is dangerous. Make sure to get up early enough and give yourself enough time to get ready. Don’t try to multitask in the car, where you will be distracted.
- Set everything before you leave. Before you leave your house, set the temperature, radio, and GPS. Don’t try to do it while driving, as it can make you lose your focus.
- Put your phone away. No matter how you use your phone while driving, it can be a distraction. Your best course of action is to put it away and turn it off until you reach your destination. Don’t try to talk or text while driving.
- Let your passengers help. If you are driving with someone, let them take care of some tasks, such as changing the radio station or reading a GPS.
Contact a Houston Distracted Driving Attorney Today
You might not find a distraction to be a major issue, but it really is. It causes drivers to take their eyes off the road and hands off the wheel, making accidents more likely. Have you been injured in a distracted driving accident? If so, the West Law Office can help you with your case. Get the compensation you deserve. Contact a Houston distracted driving attorney by calling 281-347-3247 or filling out the online form.