Texting and driving is a growing problem, and there seems to be no way to curb it. While legislators and public safety officials have attempted public education efforts, stronger punishments, and campaigns that appeal to drivers’ humanity, the stats seem to indicate that people struggle to control their distractions.
It takes five seconds to read an average text message. When you’re driving 55 MPH, that’s the same as driving a full football field with your eyes closed. But in spite of the obvious dangers that this type of behavior poses, research indicates that about at red lights and stop signs. And about 35% report that they continue using apps while actively driving.
Alabama Code 32-5A-350 states that using a phone to write, send, or read text communications is illegal. For this reason, proving that the other driver was texting when they hit you can be very helpful.
Your car accident attorney may use a variety of methods to prove that the other driver was using their phone while driving.
Getting a driver’s phone records is perhaps the easiest way to prove that they were texting at the time of the crash. As you may expect, drivers probably aren’t going to hand over their phone for your attorney to search it. Your attorney can file a lawsuit against the driver and demand phone records as part of the discovery process. This allows the phone companies to hand over the data you need.
Another good source of information is traffic cameras. These high-powered cameras can generally track a car’s license plate and the identity of a driver, and if a picture shows the driver with a camera in hand, your case gets a lot stronger. These cameras aren’t everywhere, so they aren’t guaranteed to help you. This is particularly true in smaller communities like Bay Minette and Chatom, which may not have traffic cameras everywhere.
Few things anger safe drivers like texting and driving, so don’t be surprised if someone stops to help you after you get hit by a negligent driver. If they saw the at-fault driver texting a few blocks back on State Highway 31 or were almost hit by that same driver as they passed Bay Minette’s Walmart Supercenter, they may stop to provide their contact information to you to ensure that the other driver is held accountable. Pass this information to your attorney as soon as possible.
Police Report Information
The police report may be able to help you prove the other driver’s unsafe habits. Drivers are unlikely to tell the police that they were texting at the time of the accident, but you might be surprised what people unintentionally admit when they are stressed out and trying to cover their own backs. Even telling the police that they just looked at the phone for a moment or were just reading a text can be very useful when it comes time to seek compensation.
Your next steps depend entirely on the details of your case. Your attorney may take aggressive action to prove that the other driver was texting. They may also have enough other evidence proving the driver’s liability that they don’t need to subpoena phone records or search traffic cameras.
Choose Turner, Onderdonk, Kimbrough & Howell for Your Car Accident Claim
Choosing the right attorney for your personal injury claim can help you build the strongest case possible. Our team has offices in Bay Minette and Chatom to serve you. Schedule with either office , or reach our Chatom office at 251-847-2237 or our Bay Minette office at 251-651-0483.