Can You Prove Distracted Driving Caused an Accident?
When we talk about distracted driving, most will think of using a mobile device – talking, texting, emailing – but there are many activities that can distract a driver and lead to a serious accident.
Distracted driving is any activity that takes your attention away from driving.
- Talking with others in the car (passengers)
- Eating or drinking
- Grooming activities (combing your hair, applying lipstick)
- Adjusting the radio or other controls on the dashboard
Proving Distracted Driving
Yes, it can be challenging to prove distracted driving was the cause of an accident; however, you can gather the following types of evidence that may ultimately support the other driver was distracted.
- Cell phone records can show whether the driver was on the phone or texting at the time of the crash. Your lawyer can subpoena these records which will show the exact time and date of the activity.
- Electronic trails may be left by things such as instant messaging apps, social media platforms and email messaging. Experts can be hired to investigate this data as it pertains to an accident.
- Witness statements from passengers in your car as well as the other driver’s passengers can tell what they know and saw. In addition, there may be passersby and/or pedestrians who saw the accident as well as people in other cars.
- The police report may include notes from law enforcement officers at the scene, such as their own observations of distracted driving or incriminating behavior, evidence suggesting the driver may have been distracted, the at-fault driver’s own statement, what officers found on the drivers cell phone and more.
- Video footage from devices such as traffic camera recorders, police car dash cams, body cameras, security/surveillance cameras and other cell phones may visually tell the story.
- The scene of the accident might give you some indications or additional forensic evidence. For instance, a lack of tire or brake marks may indicate the other driver did not hit the brakes meaning that his or her attention was not solely on the road. You might want to video tape the scene as soon after the accident as possible to show such evidence.
- An accident reconstruction specialist can look at the scene and all other evidence then create a demonstration of how they believe the accident occurred
The best way to build a strong case against a distracted driver is to hire a personal injury lawyer, one with the experience and resources needed to help you prove your claim. Your lawyer can take the burden off your shoulders by gathering evidence, interviewing witnesses, hiring experts and more.
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