Although I say texting, there are numerous silly things people could be doing when they should be paying attention to the road: Facebook, Instagram, Pandora, Spotify, email, texting, etc. Texting while driving is a little harder to prove than driving under the influence of alcohol because (1) no one ever admits to it and (2) there isn’t a blood, breath, or urine test you can use to show someone was using their phone when they got into the accident.
But one can extrapolate when it happened by the surrounding circumstances. A scenario I see that just screams “texting” is where someone just blows a red light, no brakes or anything. You have to ask yourself, how could that person be so careless? Well either they should not have a driver’s license because they are legally blind, or they had to be texting. Another scenario is a rear-ender without skid marks. How could the driver not see the big metal thing with two bright red lights on it at all before they hit it? Probably because they were distracted by their phone.
Distracted driving is not something to be taken lightly. In 2017, 3,166 people were killed in motor vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers. In 2019, the Zebra conducted a national survey of young drivers. 36% of respondents aged 18 to 24 admitted to texting while driving. In 2018, 4,637 people died in car crashes due to cell phone use. A ticket for texting while driving will cost the driver an average of $226 per year on their car insurance.
Currently there are no punitive (punishment) damages available to plaintiffs if a defendant caused the plaintiff’s injury through distracted driving, but maybe there should be. Certainly distracted driving is has become a huge problem. If you or someone you know has been hurt in an accident involving a driver you suspect was driving distracted, call Cefali & Cefali. We can help get victims the compensation they deserve.