Charlottesville Distracted Driving Accident Attorney
Virginia continues to crack down on distracted driving. For example, Virginia Code §46.2-818.2 recently went into effect that prohibits drivers from holding a cellphone while driving a vehicle. Anyone spotted by police holding a phone and driving can be pulled over. An initial violation is an infraction that can result in a fine. Too many infractions can result in serious penalties.
If you were injured by a distracted driver, realize that help is available. Our Charlottesville distracted driving lawyers have obtained compensation for injured clients. Reach out to schedule a meeting.
What is Distracted Driving?
Distracted driving includes more than texting. Essentially, any activity that distracts a motorist’s attention will qualify. This includes:
- Fiddling with the dashboard controls
- Rubbernecking an accident
- Using a GPS
- Talking with people in the vehicle
- Brushing hair
- Applying makeup
If an activity engages your eyes or your mind for even a split second, it is probably a distraction.
Why Is Distracted Driving a Problem?
Anything that diverts a driver’s attention increases the risk of a crash. There are many vehicles on the road, as well as pedestrians trying to cross. A motorist whose attention is split between driving and some other task might never see them.
For example, reading a text might take 4 or 5 seconds. When traveling at a high speed, motorists might travel 100 yards or more before they look back up. Even worse, research shows that motorists continue to think about the message for many seconds after sending or reading one. Until you focus 100% on driving, you are at heightened risk of hitting someone.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, about 400,000 people were injured in 2018 by distracted drivers across the country. An alarming 3,000 people were also killed in these wrecks. An outsized percentage of distracted driving victims were teens and other young adults.
How Can You Prove a Driver Was Distracted?
Some motorists might admit they were texting or talking on the phone when they hit you. Many people exclaim, “I never even saw you!” as they exit their cars holding their phones. Our lawyers might also subpoena the driver’s cell phone records, which can show that he or she was texting or talking at the moment of the crash.
Other evidence might be available. For example, someone eating a bowl of soup will probably exit their vehicle with the soup all over their clothes. Any pet running around inside the car could also have served as a distraction.
We also rely on your testimony. You might have seen the driver with a phone clamped to her ear in the seconds before the collision.
Receiving Compensation from a Distracted Driver
Distraction is a source of negligence, which means the failure to operate a vehicle with reasonable care. Negligent drivers in Virginia must pay compensation to the victims they injure. Compensation in the form of money damages can cover medical care, lost wages, and damage to your vehicle. You should also receive a fair sum for pain and suffering.
Speak with a Distracted Driving Attorney in Charlottesville
At our firm, we have negotiated many favorable settlements with distracted drivers. We can also go into court and sue, if necessary, to get the compensation you need. Contact MichieHamlett today to schedule a free consultation.