Safe motor vehicle operation requires drivers to focus all their attention on the road. Looking away for only a second could cause a crash. Yet, many drivers allow distractions to divert their attention.
Someone who suffers injuries due to a distracted driving car accident in San Antonio could seek damages from the at-fault driver. A local car wreck lawyer could help you seek compensation.
One common form of distracted driving is cell phone use. Texas has undertaken major public education efforts to discourage drivers from using their phones while operating their vehicles, including passage of Texas Transportation Code §545.4251, which bars using a handheld device to read, write, or send a text while driving.
However, there are other common ways that drivers can be distracted and get into accidents. Although the activities themselves are not illegal, they divert the driver’s attention from the road, and so they constitute distracted driving. These include driving while:
When an injured person seeks damages from the defendant, the plaintiff must prove that the defendant was negligent. Negligence requires a demonstration that the defendant did not take sufficient care to prevent harm to others and that the plaintiff’s injuries are a direct result of that lack of care.
A citation for distracted driving or another moving violation is evidence of negligence. Even if the other driver did not receive a citation, a plaintiff’s attorney could reconstruct the accident to gather and present evidence showing that the defendant did not use reasonable care.
Plaintiffs can support their own cause by taking certain steps immediately after the accident. A police report and witness statements can provide invaluable evidence of negligence, so anyone involved in a car wreck should call law enforcement to the scene. Seeking medical treatment immediately after the incident is advisable, even if the person is not experiencing symptoms. Pictures of the scene, including the road and any hazards or visual distractions, are often useful indicators of negligence.
There are often several factors that contribute to a car crash, and the plaintiff’s actions may play a role. Depending on the circumstances, a negligent plaintiff could still collect damages from other negligent parties.
Texas follows a modified comparative negligence rule. This means each party to an accident is responsible for the portion of the damages they caused. A plaintiff who is primarily responsible for the accident that injured them may not collect damages from other negligent parties.
However, a plaintiff who holds less than 51 percent of the blame for an accident could collect damages, but the judge will reduce the award by a percentage that reflects their degree of fault. A skillful attorney could use evidence and testimony to persuade a judge or jury that a plaintiff’s fault was less than that of other negligent parties.
Car accident cases can be complicated, with each involved driver and their insurer trying to minimize their liability for damages. It helps to have a professional advocate representing you in these situations.
If you or someone you love has suffered injuries in a distracted driving car accident in San Antonio, seek a seasoned local car accident lawyer to help you. They can collect evidence, negotiate with insurers, and file a lawsuit if necessary. Meanwhile, you could recover from your injuries and go about your life. Call today to schedule a case review.