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December 18, 2014

How do I Prove that a Driver was Distracted?

woman distracted drivingDistracted driving is a leading cause of auto accidents and injuries in the United States. Even though many organizations have dedicated much time to educating Americans [1] regarding the risks of distracted driving and Pennsylvania (along with numerous other states) have enacted laws [2] to ban texting, emailing, and similar activities while driving, auto accidents continue to occur on a regular basis due to driver distractions.

In order for victims of distracted driving accidents to recover financially, they must adequately prove that the driver was acting negligently. Therefore, it is important to know the different ways possible to prove that a driver was engaging in distracted driving when they caused an accident.

The driver admits to it—Though this rarely happens and you are generally advised to not admit any fault immediately after an accident, some drivers do come right out and admit that they were texting or otherwise not paying attention at the time of the accident.

Witness testimony—Often, bystanders or other drivers will remain on the scene and give a statement regarding what they saw occur. Witnesses may have noticed that the driver was looking down at a phone, reaching into the backseat, or participating in a similarly distracting activity when you collided. Similarly, if you saw the driver on the phone or doing something else distracting, tell the officer at the scene of the accident so that it will go into the police report. The officer may have also seen the driver, as well.

Cell phones records—It is admissible to use text and call records in court to demonstrate that someone was using their mobile device when the accident happened.

Video evidence—These days, cameras are everywhere, including on street signs, traffic signals, storefronts, police dashboards, and even in our pockets. Chances are that some video device recorded the driver prior to the accident and, if you discover that video, you can use it to show what they were doing.

You need to show evidence to back up your claim that a driver was distracted, and an experienced attorney can help you gather evidence to prove your case so that you can rightfully recover.

[1] http://www.distraction.gov/

[2] http://www.dot.state.pa.us/Internet/pdnews.nsf/antiTextingLaw?readForm

 

 

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