Distracted Driving Accidents
Distracted driving endangers the person behind the wheel and others on the road alike. If you or your loved one has been injured in an accident caused by a distracted driver, such as a failure to yield crash, you may be entitled to compensation for your harm. At the Galbreath Law Firm, our Abilene distracted driving accident lawyer can thoroughly evaluate the facts of your case and provide you with an honest assessment of your claim. You can rest assured that we are committed to holding negligent drivers accountable for the harm that they cause.Pursuing Compensation for a Distracted Driving Accident
Distracted driving is anything that diverts your attention from the primary task of driving. In other words, distracted driving occurs when a person is not entirely focused on operating his or her motor vehicle safely. All distractions endanger driver, passenger, and bystander safety. Unfortunately, distracted driving is a widespread phenomenon. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), distracted driving was the cause of 3,477 deaths and 391,000 injuries across the United States in 2015. The Texas Department of Transportation reports that there were 109,658 traffic crashes in Texas involving distracted driving in 2016, a three percent increase from the previous year. While cell phones are the most common driving distraction, other distractions behind the wheel may include:
- Eating and drinking;
- Adjusting the stereo or navigation system;
- Checking email or posting to social media;
- Emotional distractions, such as arguing with passengers;
- Personal grooming;
- Reaching back to comfort a child or pet.
In the context of car accidents, negligence is a term used to denote unreasonable behavior that endangers others on the road. Specifically, negligence takes place when a person causes injury, death, or property damage by failing to drive how a reasonably prudent driver would have driven in the same or similar circumstances. For example, if a driver causes an accident because he or she was texting and driving, that driver would likely be liable for any resulting harm. This is because a reasonably prudent driver would understand the risk of collisions created by texting behind the wheel. A distracted driving accident attorney in the Abilene area could help a victim bring a claim against that driver.
It is important to note that Texas uses a modified comparative fault rule, under which fault is relatively apportioned between the parties to an accident. Officially known in Texas as “proportionate responsibility,” this rule serves to recognize that car accidents are not always the fault of a single driver. Instead, both parties may have played a role in causing or contributing to the crash. For example, if a defendant caused an accident on I-20 by texting and driving, but the severity of the accident increased because you were speeding, your damages will be reduced by your degree of fault for the accident. For example, a jury might determine that you were 20 percent liable for the accident, due to your speeding. In such a situation, you would be able to take home 80 percent of your total damages award (such as $800,000 if the total award was $1 million). There is one significant exception to this rule, which is that a plaintiff cannot recover damages from the other party if he or she was 51 percent or more at fault for the accident.Contact an Abilene Distracted Driving Accident Attorney for Advice and Advocacy
Distracted driving is a major issue in Texas and across the United States. If you or someone close to you has been injured in a rear-end collision or another accident caused by a distracted driver’s negligence, we can help you understand your legal rights and options. At the Galbreath Law Firm, we vigorously pursue the justice and compensation that each client deserves in their case. We represent people in Abilene, Breckinridge, Brownwood, Cisco, Eastland, Clyde, Baird, Sweetwater, Snyder, Colorado City, Rosco, Anso, Albany, Haskel, Hamlin, Coleman, and Ranger Hill. Time is of the essence in these cases, so call us today at 325-437-7000 or contact us online to set up a free consultation with a distracted driving accident lawyer in the Abilene area. In case of emergency, you can call 325-829-8000.