Distracted driving is one of the causes of auto accidents in Georgia, and the statistics continue to grow. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration categorizes distracted driving in three parts: visual, cognitive, or manual. When drivers cause an accident because they took their attention off of the road, they need to take responsibility for their actions. Vehicle accident lawyers represent their clients to gather and show the evidence proving that the defendant was at fault and liable for paying compensation.
What is Distracted Driving?
There are numerous distractions that drivers must deal with or resist every time they are behind the wheel. Cell phones, radios, and other passengers can take the driver’s attention away from their driving. Even if their eyes are on the road, they are not focused on other drivers and changing signals. Text messages and events outside of the car divert eyes away from the road and somewhere else. Even children in the back seat can distract the driver when they need something from their parent in the front.
Distraction.gov is the official US government website for distracted driving. According to their findings, 3,331 people were killed in crashes in 2011 that involved a distracted driver. This statistic increased from the year before. In the same year, more than 387,000 people were injured in the accidents that involved a distracted driver. A study from Monash University found that individuals who use hand-held devices while driving have quadrupled the likelihood that they would be involved in a serious crash.
What to Do if You Suspect an Accident was Caused by Texting or Distracted Driving
Those who have been injured in a vehicle accident with the knowledge or suspicion of distracted driving first need to call the police when the accident occurs and file an accident report immediately. Exchanging numbers and information as well as taking pictures of the scene will improve their case and help the attorney when it comes time to gather evidence. If anyone is injured, they need to seek medical attention immediately.
Vehicle accident lawyers are not needed in every accident, but their advice will help the victim in case the other driver is not accepting responsibility for the accident or there are issues and insurance is stalling to pay for medical fees or rehabilitation. They can gather evidence including phone records to prove technical distractions at the time of the accident. Attorneys can also help the victim receive their settlement for pain and suffering if it is fair and appropriate in the case. Punitive damages will remind the defendant not to make the same mistake again.
Drivers and legislators are taking more measures to make sure they are driving with fewer distractions, but accidents still happen. Atlanta has hundreds of personal injury attorneys ready to protect the rights of clients involved in vehicle accidents. Attorneys focus their legal services in different areas of personal injury law including auto accidents. Things to look for when hiring an attorney include experience and success rate. Individuals can meet with attorneys, often in a free consultation, to learn more about their options and what vehicle accident lawyers will do for them.
If you are in the Atlanta area and believe you were injured by a distracted driver, our Atlanta auto accident attorneys offer a free consultation to hear your story and advise you on your legal rights and options. You don't have to go it alone or accept the insurance company's settlement offer!
About the Author: Lawrence Buddoo
Lawrence Buddoo is a founding attorney at Buddoo and Associates, P.C. He has more than 20 years of experience handling complex cases throughout Atlanta, Georgia.