Merced Distracted Driving Lawyers
It’s hard not to use your phone while driving. We are so accustomed to having our devices at our fingertips. However, despite approximately 95% of drivers believing cellphone use while driving is hazardous, people still do it. Moreover, in California driving while using a cell phone is illegal for drivers under 18 and illegal for adults if not using the hands-free mode.
Victims injured by distracted drivers deserve compensation for the losses they suffered through no fault of their own. At Silva Injury Law, we believe that you and your family deserve to receive the best settlement possible for your damages. Giving you a voice and protecting your rights is why we are here.
What Are The Causes Of Distracted Driving?
Perhaps most people these days think cellphone use is the only reason a driver may become distracted. Using a cell phone while driving is as dangerous as drunk driving. Texting and driving is naturally distracting. Checking your “socials” or drafting emails are also distracting behaviors. However, dialing and talking on your device while driving, even if using a hands-free device, distracts drivers from paying close attention to the road. Checking your cell phone’s GPS device is a tremendous distraction as well.
Even sneaking a peek at your phone averts your eyes and attention from the task at hand. Looking away from the road for as little as two seconds doubles your chances of causing an accident. Checking your phone for five seconds is the equivalent of traveling the length of a football field (300 feet) blindfolded. Think of how much can happen in that span.
Looking at your device at a stop light is not any safer. AAA says that drivers experience a “hangover” effect. Motorists reported having cloudy thoughts and remaining distracted for almost 30 seconds after putting their phones down. Cellphones are not the only distractions motorists experience.
Onboard computers and navigation systems are enormous distractions. One AAA study found that drivers between the ages of 55 and 75 needed eight more seconds to use their hands-free devices, even when voice-activated, than drivers from 21 to 36.
Distractions Other Than Cell Phones
Obeying California’s hands-free law does not eliminate all distractions. Anything that takes your attention and concentration away from the road distracts you.
Distractions include behaviors like:
- Talking with passengers,
- Unruly passengers,
- Changing clothing,
- Reading, and
- Reaching to the floor for an object.
These behaviors can create a hazardous situation and lead to a severe crash.
How to Prove Distracted Driving
Distracted driving is negligent driving. Negligence in California is the failure to abide by a duty of care that causes another person to suffer an injury.
Every motorist owes a duty to all other road users to drive safely. Engaging in any activity that creates a dangerous situation, like driving distracted, potentially violates the duty of care. For instance, the person texting and driving who then crashes into a bicycle rider violates the duty of care to drive safely.
The bicycle rider would have a claim against the driver for negligence if the rider sustained an injury caused by the driver’s breach of the duty of care.
What Is The Average Settlement For A Distracted Driving Accident?
At Silva Injury Law, we pursue every avenue of recovery for our clients. It’s in your best interest to include everyone who might have contributed to the crash and caused you pain.
Each claim is unique. Therefore, there is no way to determine the average settlement.
However, California law allows people injured by another’s negligence to recover compensation for losses like:
- Lost wages,
- Future lost economic gain,
- Medical bills,
- Anticipated future medical costs,
- Property damages, and
- Pain and suffering.
A family who loses a loved one because of a distracted driver could file a wrongful death claim.
Time is of the essence. You have only two years to file a claim in court. Missing that deadline means you forfeit your rights to recover damages.