Cell phones help us communicate anywhere and everywhere. But as cell phones have increased in popularity, we’ve learned there is a time and place to communicate with others. Behind the wheel of a motor vehicle is not the right time or place. Using a cell phone while driving is one of the most dangerous distractions. At 55 mph, taking your eyes off the road for as little as five seconds to read a text message is like driving the entire length of a football field with your eyes shut.
The texting and driving accident law firm of Stokes Stemle, LLC has seen firsthand the devastating impact of texting and driving. Collisions caused by distracted drivers leave accident victims physically and financially compromised, struggling to get back on their feet. We aim to help Alabama drivers understand the dangers of texting behind the wheel and how they can protect themselves if a careless driver causes an accident.
Has a texting and driving motorist injured you in an accident? Need help moving your claim forward? Discuss your case with the knowledgeable texting and driving accident lawyers at Stokes Stemle, LLC. Contact our office today to arrange a free consultation and learn more about your legal rights.
Unseen Peril of Texting Behind the Wheel
We learn to multitask to stay on top of things at work or school. Unfortunately, multitasking is one thing you should not do when behind the wheel. Distractions, especially cell phones, take a driver’s attention away from the road and the safe operation of their vehicle. Distracted drivers easily miss traffic signs and signals, stationary objects, other vehicles, and sudden changes in traffic flow. These distractions can lead to catastrophic accidents.
Three types of distracted driving can cause significant collisions on Alabama roadways. These distractions include:
- Visual distractions – Visual distractions include anything that takes a driver’s eyes from the road. Checking to see if you have text messages, viewing missed calls, or reading messages are examples of visual distractions.
- Manual distractions – When a driver takes their hands off the wheel, that is a manual distraction. Using your hands to dial a phone, change the music, or type text messages are common manual distractions that lead to car accidents.
- Cognitive distractions – A cognitive distraction occurs when a driver takes their mind off driving. Daydreaming or thinking about your to-do list can lead to cognitive distractions to the point where you may not remember the last few miles you drove.
Texting and Driving Car Accident Statistics
How many accidents are caused by texting and driving? Drive Safe Alabama estimates that a texting driver is 23 times more likely to get into a collision than non-texting motorists. The Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT) estimates that in one year, distracted driving incidents claimed the lives of nearly 50 people. Nationally, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that distracted driving killed over 3,500 people in one year.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) breaks down the numbers even further, estimating that distracted driving claims the lives of nearly nine people every day. Unfortunately, many distracted driving accidents involve young and teenage drivers. One survey suggests that as many as 39 percent of U.S. high school students texted or emailed while driving in a 30-day period.
What to Do After a Texting and Driving Accident
Texting and driving accidents can change your life. The trauma of being involved in one of these types of collisions can lead to shock and confusion. How do you protect yourself? What steps should you take after a texting and driving accident to prove your case and recover maximum compensation for your injuries? Contacting the authorities, exchanging information with the other driver, and documenting the crash scene are steps you should take immediately. But what about in the days and weeks after the crash?
Consider following these steps after a texting and driving accident:
- Seek medical help immediately – A collision with a distracted driver can lead to significant injuries, even if you initially feel okay. Always seek medical attention right after an accident. Immediate medical intervention can save your life. The documentation may also help strengthen your compensation claim.
- Contact an attorney – Proving your case can be challenging. Even witness statements may not be enough to support your claim against a distracted driver. Contact an experienced Alabama texting and driving accident attorney for help.
- Follow your medical treatment plan – Protect your health and compensation claim by following your doctor’s plan exactly as they say.
- Avoid social media – Do not post on social media platforms until your attorney can resolve your claim. Your words and photographs could be used against you by an opposing attorney or insurance adjuster.
- Keep all documents – Save all bills and documents related to the accident. These documents may include repair receipts, medical bills, and out-of-pocket expenses.
Can an Attorney Find Out If the Other Driver Was Texting?
Proving a distracted driver caused a texting and driving accident can be challenging. To build a compelling claim, you need evidence showing how the other driver’s actions make them liable for the collision. Evidence that can help support your claim may include:
- A police report
- Witness statements
- Cell phone records
- Video surveillance or dashcam footage
Getting some of this information, especially another driver’s cell phone information, can be difficult for an ordinary person. It often takes legal intervention by an experienced attorney to gather the type of evidence that supports your claim against the distracted driver. Your lawyer can help you access the other driver’s cell phone data and establish that they may have been using their phone at the time of the collision.
Contact Our Texting and Driving Accident Lawyers Today
Are you worried about holding a distracted driver accountable for their actions and recovering the money you need? Speak with a knowledgeable Alabama texting and driving accident lawyer for help. At Stokes Stemle, LLC, we want to shoulder the burden of seeking meaningful compensation so you can focus on your recovery.
Call our texting and driving accident law firm today at 334-564-9242 for a free legal consultation.