Automobile accidents resulting from distractions and negligence number in the thousands and have caused a staggering amount of casualties as well. The streets of Virginia witness scores of accidents per week and the stats have continued to climb upwards over the past years.
As the roadways become more and more crowded, people are at an ever-greater risk of sustaining serious property damage, catastrophic injuries, and other economic and non-economic damages. Distractions, even for a couple of seconds, can yield disastrous results on the road where every instance counts.
Distracted driving is a hotly debated topic, and its implications on road safety are alarming, to say the least. If you were hurt due to a distracted driving accident, you should waste no time in seeking out an experienced lawyer and filing your compensation claim for bodily injury liability and other damages.
Distracted Driving Accidents
Drivers are legally required to be extra careful on the road and keep their eyes glued to what lays in front of them. However, many tend to ignore this legal duty of care (this is called negligence in personal injury law) and engage elsewhere while driving.
Distracted driving can take any number of forms, however, the gist remains the same: the driver is not focusing on the road. Texting while driving is one classic example of distracted driving. When asked about it, teenage drivers and even middle-aged people confessed to doing so.
While people admit that texting and driving together is not okay – legally speaking – they either dismiss the risks associated with the activity by calling it simple multi-tasking or by ending the discussion with “I can handle it.” But the truth is far from it.
Distracted driving actions such as texting from behind the wheel push thousands of people into violent traffic accidents every year. These motor vehicle accidents are especially intense because the reaction time is cut short because of the distractions, i.e. the at-fault driver has a smaller window to press the brakes, and thus the collision speed and momentum will be dangerously high.
Many negligent drivers don’t realize until after an accident has happened that their actions have yielded disastrous results. Shifting your gaze away from the road, even if only for a couple of seconds, can cause such motor vehicle collisions.
Activities like phone calling (even on a speakerphone), eating, fumbling with the radio, choosing a music playlist, chatting with onboard passengers, gazing at the surroundings can all wait!
When the stakes are as high as someone losing their life or getting seriously mutilated, we all have good reason to stay focused on driving.
Apart from the agonizing personal injuries, distracted driving accidents (especially truck accidents) also cause heavy financial drains in terms of property damage, medical expenses, extra expenses (special damages), and loss of income/lost wages.
Couple this with the suffering of the victims (which may get them some punitive damages) and the ever-present possibility of a wrongful death claim (leading to loss of companionship) in such scenarios, the payout can be substantial.
If you were wronged through such an accident, then seeking maximum compensation is your right; you should not delay getting in touch with competent distracted driving accident lawyers and taking your fight to the responsible party and their insurance company.
What Qualifies As A Distracted Driving Accident?
As mentioned earlier, anything that shifts the driver’s attention elsewhere while driving will be construed as a distraction. Reckless driving is not a minor offense but a serious one because such auto accidents have resulted in fatalities.
Here are some of the actions that qualify as distractions, thus rendering a cat crash as a distracted driving accident:
- Using the cell phone will driving
- Engaging with other passengers or children present in the vehicle
- The same goes with being distracted with your pets
- Drinking or eating while driving
- Constantly checking the map or GPS
- Adjusting the media player, radio, or other vehicular controls
- Retrieving something from the glove compartment
- Reading billboards and other signs you come across when driving
- Adjusting your hair or looking at yourself in the rear-view mirror
- Daydreaming while the vehicle is in motion (and this happens more often than you’d think)
And much more…
Distracted drivers are not only a threat to their safety but also, those of others around them; fatigued driving and drunk driving are also related albeit different risks which can cause two-car accidents.
None of us are safe from the doer and the deed and we must be extra-cautious about both. The road can be as dangerous as we choose to make it, thus a little attention and focus can save your life and someone else’s too.
However, if you were wronged like this, seek help from experienced auto accident attorneys.
Types of Damages Sustained By Distracted Driving Accident Victims
The injured party has to face staggering economic and non-economic pressures that result from the said car crash and which will affect their daily life. Depending on the intensity of the crash, time of impact, and the parties involved (i.e. pedestrian-car accidents, bicycle accidents, and motorcycle accidents are especially brutal), these damages will vary in severity.
The monetary damages are the easier half to calculate.
These encompass all the monetary drains (due for the liable party) that wouldn’t have happened if there wasn’t an accident with injuries.
This means that not only medical costs and therapy expenses are included in this category but also property damages (vehicle repairs), special damages (such as paying a nanny to take care of your children while you get better), and lost wages.
You’ll have to keep a track of all of these economic drains, don’t lose the receipts and medical bills if you wish to get fairly compensated. Also, an experienced car accident lawyer will add an estimate of future financial pressures associated with the accident, i.e. you may need an extended period of physical therapy, or your earning potential may have been cut down, and so on.
However, when it comes to the non-economic damages (emotional distress and physical pain), accident claims get a bit tricky. Not only is there no way for you to show anyone your mental and physical pain but also, the insurance adjuster representing the negligent party will use different tactics and tricks to try and prove that you’re not hurting as bad as you claim.
However, if you suffered from severe injuries (which may compromise the quality of life) and deep emotional pain then there is no room left for doubt; however, even minor injuries can leave one in mental anguish because such accidents are usually very avoidable, and you can demand financial compensation for non-economic losses under the Virginia personal injury laws.
Thus it is never wise to face the insurance company on your own, or to accept their first offer, or to give a statement prematurely, or to blindly agree with whatever they say (because of contributory negligence blames). Instead, call up a team of competent personal injury attorneys to represent you and let them worry about the troubles.
If the liable person does not have adequate insurance coverage, then you will have to turn to your own insurance policy and seek reimbursement via the uninsured motorist coverage.
Don’t delay matters in either case because there is a legal limit for all legal claims regarding accident injuries resulting from driver negligence in general and driver distraction in specific.
Proving Your Distracted Driving Accident Claim For Damages
Most insurance companies demand that you report a distracted driving accident no later than within 24 hours of the said accident. After filing your insurance claim, you should not burden your mind with worries and instead seek medical care from a primary care physician as soon as possible (you can do that early on too).
Don’t delay anything in such cases. The distracted driving law in Virginia also requires you to report the matter to the police at the accident scene, wait for the reporting officers to show up and when they do, tell them all you can remember – ask for copies of their police reports as well.
You should also photograph the scene, recording evidence of damage. As for the personal injury claim, if you saw the defendant driver using their mobile phone, for instance, ask your auto accident lawyer to investigate their mobile usage history – you will find compelling evidence from that area.
In case of hit-and-run accidents and rollover accidents that resulted due to the negligence of careless drivers, the victims may not be able to investigate the scene themselves but lawyers can investigate the case, identify the at-fault party, and seek compensatory damages.
All in all, your goal should be to leave no page unturned, dig out as much information as you can (such as contact information of eyewitnesses), and then leave the rest to an experienced team of driving accident attorneys for winning you a fair settlement.
The VACAIL Law Firm Is On Your Side
Proving a negligent driving accident claim and pressuring the insurance company to offer fair compensation for your accident settlement. As urgent as matters are, you can’t rush things and you can’t handle matters on your own as well.
Having competent personal injury lawyers with decades of experience by your side will be the difference between receiving the lowest settlement and pressuring the auto insurance company into dropping their tactics and giving you what you rightfully deserve for the difficult times you had to face.
At the VACAIL law firm, we make it a point to take charge of matters for our clients at all stages and thus ensure that their interests are not compromised. And if you’re worried about upfront attorney fees and consultation payments then take a sigh of relief because we won’t demand either.
For us, your case is not only a legal process, it’s your life and we value it just as such.
Give us a call, and we’ll show you how we can help you get compensated fairly!