For the busy people of Savannah, time is invaluable and multitasking has simply become a way of life. So much, in fact, that many people multitask while they are driving their cars. While every driver should be fully aware of the dangers, it does not stop distracted drivers from causing accidents each and every day.
At Hasner Law, we understand that the aftermath of a distracted driving accident can be difficult. You may have serious injuries that require extensive treatment and cause you to miss work. Some accident victims may be left with lasting impairments that completely change their lives. An accident caused by a distracted driver may cause you complex financial, physical, and emotional challenges. We are here to help you hold that driver accountable for their negligent actions. Call Hasner Law at 912-234-2334 for more information about how we can assist you after an accident.
How Big Is the Problem?
Distracted driving has been a risk ever since the invention of cars. However, the problem of drivers not paying adequate attention has increased dramatically in the last couple of decades—and even considered a public health crisis by health and safety officials and researchers. Statistics published by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) about distracted driving in the United States show:
- At any moment during daylight, about 660,000 drivers are using their cell phones in some manner.
- Teens and young adults age 16 to 24 are the age group most likely to be distracted by electronic devices.
- In 2015, distracted drivers injured approximately 391,000 people.
- That same year, 3,477 people needlessly lost their lives in fatal distracted driving accidents.
Those figures show that distracted driving causes an alarming number of accidents with injuries and deaths every year, and the problem is only getting worse. Be aware that a distracted driving accident can happen to you and understand what to do if you are injured in an accident. First, if you are in an accident, always seek medical attention for proper diagnosis and treatment of any injuries. Some serious injuries do not show up immediately, even though you feel fine right after the accident. Next, call an attorney who understands the complexities of distracted driving accident cases to protect your rights and help you get compensation for your injuries—so you can focus on your recovery.
What Causes Distracted Driving?
Many types of distractions occur for drivers, especially involving smartphones and similar mobile devices. Even though Georgia has specifically banned all text-based messaging for all drivers, people continually violate this law, putting others at risk. Some technologically-based distractions include the following:
- Reading and typing texts, emails, or instant messages
- Searching for information on the internet
- Entering information into a GPS or mapping application and reading directions
- Controlling the radio from your electronic device
- Browsing social media sites and reading notifications
- Talking on a cell phone, or using voice-to-text
- Using in-car hands-free technology
Some drivers use their cell phones constantly—but even looking at a phone for a few seconds is plenty of time for a driver to crash into another car and cause severe injuries.
While smartphones and other technology definitely contribute to the rise in distracted driving, other types of activities can also result in a distracted driving crash. Distractions can be anything that causes you to look away from the road, take your mind off the task of driving, or take your hands off the steering wheel. Some examples of other driver distractions include:
- Paying attention to children in the back of the car
- Drinking or eating while driving
- Putting on makeup or personal grooming
- Looking at yourself in the mirror
- Listening to podcasts or audiobooks
- Having distracting passengers
- Reading maps or books
- Looking through a bag or purse
Of course, there are many other activities that can cause visual, cognitive, or manual distractions. Texting or otherwise using a smartphone is considered particularly dangerous because it causes all three types of distraction. No matter what distracted a driver who caused an accident, that driver should hold full responsibility for the losses of the accident victims.
Your Rights as a Distracted Driving Accident Victim
The law recognizes that accident victims should not have their lives ruined by drivers who make mistakes or errors in judgment on the road. For this reason, if you can show that another driver’s negligence caused your crash, you have the right to seek compensation for all of your crash-related expenses and losses. Such losses can include past and future medical bills, lost income, lost future earnings if you cannot return to your job, pain and suffering, and more.
Car accident victims can hold negligent drivers liable in two ways: filing a car insurance claim or filing a personal injury lawsuit. Often, a case begins with an insurance claim against the negligent driver’s company. Even when these claims are relatively straightforward, insurance companies may fight liability just like anyone else and may use any of the following tactics:
- Using recorded statements against you
- Challenging the issue of liability
- Challenging the severity of your injuries
- Making an extremely low settlement offer when you need money right away to pay medical bills
- Delaying settlement or payment for an unreasonable amount of time
Even though most people do not think about hiring an attorney to handle an insurance claim, legal representation can significantly improve your chances of receiving a fair settlement offer. An attorney with experience negotiating with insurance companies can help you obtain a full and fair settlement and faster payment from the insurance company.
If the insurance process is not sufficient for you to receive the compensation you deserve, our attorneys can also file a legal claim on your behalf in civil court. We handle every aspect of the legal process and fight each step of the way to attain a favorable judgment or settlement for you.
Consult With a Savannah Accident Law Firm for Free Today
Exercising your rights as an accident victim is never simple. The Hasner Law team is here to help you. We can evaluate your options, help you prove that distracted driving caused your accident, and help you recover financially for your injuries and losses. We understand that dealing with an injury can be devastating. We’re here to make the process as easy as possible for you and your family. Call our office at 912-234-2334 or contact us online for your free initial consultation today.