Injured by a Distracted Driver in Little Rock? We Can Help
Have you been injured in an Arkansas car accident caused by a distracted driver? If you were harmed by a driver who thought that answering a phone call or responding to a text was more important than driving safely, you have every right to be upset.
Don’t let the distracted driver who caused your accident off the hook. Call Minton Law Firm today to learn how our car accident lawyers can help you file a claim or lawsuit.
We will work hard to help you secure maximum compensation for your losses. Call us 24 hours, a day 7 days a week, at 855-Xadjuster to schedule a free case evaluation.
Defining Distracted Driving
Distracted driving is the cause of close to 60,000 motor vehicle accidents annually in Arkansas.
What exactly is distracted driving? The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) defines distracted driving as “any activity that diverts attention from driving.”
There are three main types of distraction:
- Visual: A visual distraction is anything that causes you to take your eyes off the road. Turning to talk to someone in the back seat, looking too long at the GPS, and reading a text are some common visual distractions.
- Manual: A manual distraction is something that makes you take your hands off the steering wheel. Reaching for something in your bag, eating, and smoking are all examples of manual distractions.
- Cognitive: A cognitive distraction is something that takes your mind off of the task of driving. Driving while drowsy or getting behind the wheel when you are angry from a fight with your boss can be cognitive distractions.
Many distracted driving behaviors fall under all three of these categories. For example, texting is a visual, manual, and cognitive distraction, making it especially dangerous.
Common Distractions Causing Arkansas Car Accidents
When you first learned how to drive, you likely were very cautious. You made sure to keep your eyes on the road, and hands on the steering wheel, and did not let anything distract you.
As time passed, though, and you clocked more miles behind the wheel, you became a more confident driver. Unfortunately, as drivers become more confident, this sometimes results in them taking risks and driving distracted.
The following are common distractions drivers engage in while behind the wheel:
- Talking on the phone
- Adjusting the radio
- Playing games on an electronic device
- Programming the GPS
- Turning to talk to kids in the back seat
- Eating or drinking
- Applying make-up or grooming
- Reaching to dig something out of a purse, backpack, or another bag
- Taking a photo or video
- Checking emails
- Posting to social media
- Checking the news or weather report
The Dangers of Texting While Driving
Many drivers know that texting and driving is a bad idea, but they do not truly understand just how dangerous it is. The NHTSA has reported that texting and driving claims over 3,000 lives a year, with thousands more being severely injured.
What makes texting so dangerous? On average, sending or reading a text takes a driver’s attention away from the road for 5 seconds. This may not initially seem like a long time. However, if you are traveling at 55 mph, it would be like driving the length of an entire football field with your eyes closed.
During the time it takes you to send or read a text, the car in front of you could abruptly stop, a pedestrian could dart in front of you, an animal could leap into the road, or any other number of hazards could occur.
Arkansas Distracted Driving Laws
State and local government agencies in Arkansas recognize the dangers of distracted drivers and have enacted laws prohibiting the use of cell phones while driving.
Arkansas state police work hard to enforce these laws and keep roadways safe, and texting and driving have been illegal in the state for a number of years. More recently, distracted driving laws in Arkansas have expanded to prohibit any sort of “wireless interactive communication.”
This includes such things as:
- Playing games
- Scrolling or posting to social media
Arkansas also prohibits handheld cell phone use:
- In school zones
- In highway work zones
- By drivers under the age of 18
- By school bus drivers
Texting and driving in Arkansas is considered to be a “primary offense” law. This means a law enforcement officer can pull you over for texting without observing another violation. Fines begin at $250 for a first offense and can go up to $500 for subsequent offenses.
How Our Little Rock, AR Distracted Driving Attorneys Can Help
After being involved in a car accident, you may feel certain that the other motorist was driving while distracted. However, for a strong legal case, you must prove the other party was a distracted driver through clear and convincing evidence.
The personal injury attorneys at our law firm have handled many distracted driving accident claims and know what is needed to build a solid case for our clients.
Our car accident lawyers may gather one or more of the following types of evidence to prove distracted driving.
Cell phone records
If you believe that the at-fault driver was texting, taking pictures, or using his or her phone in some other way, your lawyer may be able to subpoena the other driver’s cell phone records.
Cell phone records can track device usage and provide a time and date to show:
- Calls made
- Texts sent
- Apps opened
- Photos taken
- Social media content uploaded
If the cell phone records show the driver was on the phone in the moments leading up to the crash, this can be used as evidence to prove the other driver is liable for damages.
If pedestrians or other motorists saw the other driver engage in any form of distracted driving behavior, their testimony can be used as evidence. For example, if the eyewitness recalls seeing the driver talking on the phone right before the collision, this could serve as evidence against the driver.
Your personal injury attorney will examine the accident scene and look for cameras that may have captured the collision. This could include dash cams, intersection cameras, and surveillance cameras at nearby businesses.
Camera footage could show the driver engaging in distracted driving behavior seconds before the accident happened. The video evidence may also prove the other driver did not slam on the brakes before the moment of impact – one sign of distracted driving.
While building car accident cases for our clients, our lawyers sometimes consult with accident reconstructionists and other experts. An accident reconstructionist will collect physical evidence from the collision scene and other sources of information to recreate how the accident occurred.
The information collected from the car crash reconstruction could be used to prove the at-fault driver did not hit the brakes or swerve before impact, demonstrating that the driver’s attention was on something other than the road.
Compensation Available to Victims of Distracted Driving Accidents in Little Rock, AR
At Justin Minton Law Firm, we understand that no amount of money can fully compensate for the incredible stress, physical pain, and emotional toll that often come with an accident. However, compensation can give you and your family some financial security as you and your family move forward after the accident.
A distracted driving accident attorney may be able to help you secure compensation for both economic and non-economic damages, including:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Loss of future earning potential
- Property damage
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment
- Emotional distress and more
Do not settle with the insurance company before consulting with our law firm. Justin Minton has worked as an insurance adjuster and is familiar with the tactics used to try to devalue a car accident claim.
As your distracted driving accident attorneys, we will do everything we can to secure a fair settlement for you.
Contact Our Distracted Driving Accident Lawyers Today
If you or a loved one has been injured in an Arkansas distracted driving accident, our legal team is here to help. The distracted driving accident lawyers at our law firm can inform you of your rights, determine if you have a valid claim for compensation, and look out for your best interests.
At Minton Law Firm, we take all personal injury cases on a contingency fee basis. This means you do not owe us a dime if we do not recover compensation for you.
Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. Call us 24/7 at 855-Xadjuster or fill out our contact form here at the bottom of this page.