Many of us have admittedly done it before. We’ve been driving down the road and hear the familiar ding of our cell phone to alert us that we have a text message that has come through. It’s so tempting to pick up that phone, even while on the road, and take a look at what is being said, and then to respond back. Today’s world revolves around instant gratification and response, which could be one reason why many of us have a hard time not taking calls or texting while driving.
Unfortunately, this is quite a dangerous practice, as looking down at a cell phone even for a few seconds is plenty enough time for a potentially fatal accident to happen. According to the Georgia Governor’s Office of Highway Safety, “A 2006 study of real-world driver behavior, distraction, and crash factors [showed] about 80-percent of crashes were caused by some form of distraction– such as cell phone use or being tired—occurring within three seconds of the incident.” Three small seconds is all it could take to change your life. Research has also shown that texting while driving increases your risk of being involved in a crash by 23 times, a number that is shocking and the highest ranked of all of the risks associated with driving.
What are Georgia laws regarding texting while driving?
Georgia law does not currently prohibit using a cell phone in the car to make phone calls, except for novice drivers who are under the age of 18 and bus drivers. Other than these two groups, using a cell phone to make a call while in the car is still legal. However, texting while driving is highly illegal in the state of Georgia and can result in a fine and/or traffic citation. It is important to note that texting while driving, even while you are at a complete stop, is also banned and should be avoided. This law was passed with the idea that texting while driving impairs drivers in all three main manners of distraction – visual, manual and and cognitive. In order to operate a vehicle in a safe manner, Georgia law supports the fact that a driver should be visually focused on the road, have both hands on the wheel at all times and be cognitively aware of what is going on around him or her.
What if I have been the victim of a texting while driving accident?
If you’ve been the victim of an accident that is related to texting while driving, it is of utmost importance that you first seek the help of a medical professional to ensure that your injuries are taken care of and that you can start your road to physical healing. During your medical exam, it is also a good idea to request a copy of the medical professional’s report so that you can present that to your attorney for your case.
Secondly, it is also a good idea to stay in touch with police authorities regarding your accident. Assuming you called the police after your accident, they should have created a report reviewing details of the crash. Such details should include if there was any suspicion of the other party texting while driving, or being distracted in some shape or form. The police officer at the scene of your accident might have also interviewed key witnesses who saw the wreck happen, which is often an imperative tool when dealing with a texting while driving case. Your Atlanta car accident attorney can also use this report when fighting for your justice and compensation.
It is also a good idea to take pictures of the accident while you are on the scene. Often, photos can recreate the scene of the crime and give those involved who are making decisions regarding the outcome of your case a better idea of what actually happened with your accident. Take detailed photos of both or all cars that were involved, making sure to snap pictures of the points of impact. Additionally, it is smart to take pictures of the surrounding area, particularly if there are any skid marks from any of the cars or if any cars hit neighboring buildings, traffic lights or street signs. Sometimes, accurate photos can be the deciding factor in a case like yours where texting and driving was potentially involved.
Lastly, it is of utmost importance to take care of yourself emotionally and physically throughout this process. Dealing with the fallout from a wreck can be devastating in so many ways, and it is wise to seek counsel from an Atlanta car accident attorney about what your options are in regards to compensation for your physical injuries, your time away from work, your pain and suffering associated with the crash and any other harmful effects you have experienced.
What if I do not have any photos, records or medical exam reports from my accident?
We understand that sometimes a car crash can shake you up so badly that you don’t think about obtaining any reports, photos or records involving what happened with the accident. Additionally, sometimes an accident necessitates that you be transported to the hospital immediately, which leaves no time to collect any evidence. If this is your situation, we at Ted A. Greve and Associates can still help you. Our skilled attorneys are trained to try and help you get the best result from your case, with or without supporting evidence.
When should I contact an attorney regarding my texting while driving case?
It’s a good idea to contact an attorney as soon as possible regarding your texting while driving accident. Our lawyers at Ted A. Greve and Associates are on hand to meet with you for a free consultation to discuss your options in fighting for a fair and reasonable compensation settlement. After experiencing a traumatizing situation like a car accident, we understand that you want to get back to living life as normal as soon as possible. Let us help you on your road to recovery.