The term “distracted driving” covers a wide range of instances where the driver temporarily stops paying attention to the road ahead, and instead focuses on something else. Since the advent of the smartphone more than a decade ago, this is in reference to a driver who is texting or using an app at the wheel, playing with a GPS or radio, or focusing on some other sort of screen. However, distracted driving goes beyond screens, and can be the cause of serious accidents.
If you have been injured in a car accident, and you believe that the other driver caused the accident because they were distracted, then you may be able to seek additional compensation than what their insurance company will initially offer you. When you are working with our team, you can be sure that our experience with Atlanta car accident law will be an enormous asset to your case. We will handle the negotiations with the insurance company, and if necessary, will take your case to the Atlanta courts to get you the money that you deserve.
Read more about distracted driving in Atlanta, and submit a consultation request immediately to start the process of getting the compensation you deserve after a distracted driving accident.
Examples of Distracted Driving
Eating or Drinking
When you think of drinking and driving, your first thought is about alcohol. But if someone is drinking a hot coffee and spills it on their lap, they are at an increased risk of causing an accident. The same can be said for eating in the car — if you are unable to keep both hands on the wheel, it probably is not a good idea to do it.
Adjusting the Radio or Heat
When a driver is fiddling with any of the adjustment knobs on their dashboard, they are diverting attention from the road and any upcoming situations that require them to respond. Newer vehicles have increasingly more-complex dashboards that require more attention to make seemingly simple adjustments.
Texting and Driving
When people hear distracted driving, texting or other phone usage is the first thing that comes to most people’s minds because it is alarmingly common, and very dangerous. Many phones now offer “Do Not Disturb” options while the phone is connected to the vehicle as an attempt to combat this issue.
In many states, drivers are permitted to use a single earbud as a hands-free talking device. Georgia has a hands-free law that states drivers are not allowed to touch their phones at all while in motion, so must make calls with an earbud or on speaker. With both ears listening to music, drivers can’t hear sirens, horns, or anything else that might require their attention.
Pets In the Car
Pets are often a big distraction in the car, especially if they are not in a crate. A dog whining to be pet or trying to crawl on the driver’s lap is a big distraction and can cause a major accident. Pets should be kept in a crate while driving, for their own safety, as well as everyone else’s.
Grooming While Driving
Lots of Georgians spend a significant amount of time in the car each day commuting to and from work in Atlanta, and some may think that they have discovered a great “life hack” by doing their makeup or other grooming while sitting in the congestion. Unfortunately, this is a great way to rear-end another driver.
What To Do After an Accident With a Distracted Driver
Proving that the accident was caused by the other driver’s distraction can be a tricky thing to do, so try to follow these steps:
File a Police Report
Establish early in the situation that the other driver was distracted, so that the defendant’s attorneys will not question why it is only coming up later, such as during negotiations.
Speak To Eyewitnesses
If there were others around that saw the accident, try to get eyewitness accounts that corroborate your understanding of what happened.
File a Subpoena For Phone Records
If you must, your attorney may be able to subpoena the phone company during the trial to check phone records. This can be complicated, and might not actually tell the whole story.
Look For Video Evidence
If there are traffic cameras in the area of your accident, see if you can get a copy of the tape from when your accident occurred to prove what happened.