Distracted driving and its dangers is all over the news and frighteningly, we’ve probably all been guilt of it. For example, you see a text pop up on your cell phone and steal a quick glance at your phone; or your boss calls, your Bluetooth breaks, and you put him on speaker for just a second. However, you need to remember not only are these habits costly (the cost of a texting and driving ticket is a few hundred dollars!), they are also dangerous – and can be deadly.
In fact, the L.A. County Sheriff’s Department has been cracking down on this form of “distracted driving” because of the high risks associated with it. They claim the following statistics:
- Drivers who use hand-held devices are 4x more likely to get into crashes serious enough to cause injury.
- Drivers under 20 years old have the highest proportion of distraction-related fatal crashes.
- Texting while driving can delay a driver’s reaction time just as severely as having a blood alcohol content of a legally drunk driver.
- There is no difference in the risks between hands-free and hand-held cell phone conversations, both of which can result in “inattention blindness.”
If you are involved in a car accident in Los Angeles where you know, or suspect, that the other person was texting or reading on their cell phone, the law is on your side. However, if you were the one caught texting, even if the accident was not your fault, you may be assumed at fault. California is a fault state with regard to car accidents, and the insurance of the party or parties found to be at fault is responsible for paying for the damages caused based on each party’s percentage of fault. For a more in depth explanation of the financial costs associated with a car accident, contact an experienced car accident lawyer.
If you are involved in an automobile accident, it is important to know that dealing with proving fault can be complicated, and proving that the other party was on their phone will require more than just your word for it. You may need an experienced car accident lawyer’s guidance, particularly when there are injuries involved.
When you are the injured party, you must prove that the other party is at fault in order to collect money for your injuries, property damage, etc… You also need to be aware that many auto insurance policies do not cover all of the immediate and subsequent or related damages. Contact an experienced Los Angeles accident lawyer at BIKLAW for a consultation regarding your rights.