How to Prove a Motorist Was Texting & Driving
As of 2019, 20 states have implemented a law that prohibits motorists from using handheld electronic devices while behind the wheel. Additionally, 48 states have explicitly banned texting and driving. Considering how rare it is for nearly all the states to agree on anything, such laws highlight just how dangerous texting and driving is.
Distracted driving is responsible for approximately nine traffic fatalities every single day—and texting is one of the most dangerous distractions of all. Typing even a short message will take your hands off the wheel, your eyes off the road, and your attention off the traffic around you.
Unfortunately, even if you eliminate distractions whenever you get behind the wheel, you won’t be protected from the dangers of texting and driving. The only foolproof way to avoid other motorists who happen to be texting and driving is by staying off the roads entirely.
If you were struck by a distracted driver but you’re unsure how to prove texting played a role in the accident, the following kinds of evidence may help:
1. Eyewitness Deposition
If nearby motorists, passengers, cyclists, or pedestrians saw the liable party using a mobile device just before the wreck, their deposition could prove to be valuable evidence of negligence. This is why it’s a good idea to write down the contact information of eyewitnesses before leaving the scene. If you were unable to do so, your attorney may be able to locate witnesses and interview them to find out if their deposition would contribute to your case.
2. The Official Police Report
If the motorist admitted to texting and driving, it should be included in the police report. Even if he or she denied doing so, responding officers may have stated their own impressions of the scene, which might include suspicions of distracted driving.
3. Cell Phone Records
The liable party’s cell phone records should include a timestamp for every incoming and outgoing text message. If any such timestamps correspond with the collision, these records could strengthen your case immensely. It may be necessary for your lawyer to file a subpoena to obtain them.
4. Video Footage
If you or one of the motorists in the area had a dash cam mounted at the time of the accident, it may have captured the liable party using a mobile device prior to the collision. If the crash occurred in a fairly developed area, there might also be footage from nearby surveillance cameras; however, because the owner of any such footage isn’t obligated to retain it, you will have to act fast to ensure it can be secured.
Call 561-299-3999 to Discuss Your Case with a West Palm Beach Injury Lawyer
If you were hurt in a distracted driving-related collision, contact an accident lawyer Donaldson & Weston to determine the most strategic way to proceed. We have helped hundreds of clients in personal injury and wrongful death cases. Call 561-299-3999 or use our Online Contact Form to set up a free consultation with a West Palm Beach injury attorney.