How Do You Prove the Driver Who Hit You Was Texting?
Texting while driving is such a well-recognized problem that 48 states, including Georgia, have banned it. And for good reason: the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration says five seconds is the average time a person’s eyes are off the road while texting. At 55 miles per hour, that’s enough time to cover a football field. While it’s easy to understand that texting while driving is dangerous, it isn’t always easy to prove, in a personal injury lawsuit, that it was the principle cause of an accident. Defense lawyers may try to convince juries either that texting did not occur or that it played an insignificant role part in a crash.
If you’ve been injured in a Georgia auto accident, your attorney can introduce various types of evidence to show that the driver who hit you was indeed texting. These include:
- Cell phone records — Your attorney can subpoena the other driver’s cell phone records, which show the activity logged in the moments leading up to the wreck. Obtaining these records during a pre-lawsuit investigation can put pressure on the at-fault driver’s insurance company to settle if the records indicate texting was in progress.
- Witnesses —Bystanders, bicyclists, pedestrians or other drivers may have noticed head movements or other indications that the at-fault driver was using their phone to text. Witness statements to police officers are useful in negotiating with insurance adjusters and can also be the basis for testimony during trial.
- Police reports —Accounts of accidents completed by officers at the scene or soon after contain valuable information about the crash, including details provided by the drivers involved.
- Video evidence — With many intersections and roadways being filmed 24 hours a day, there may be video footage of your accident available. Or a witness with a cell phone may have been recording and caught the incident on video.
- Accident reconstruction —While an accident reconstruction expert can’t directly show that someone was texting, their testimony can go a long way toward proving that distracted driving had to be involved.
In Georgia, talking on a phone while driving can be illegal too, unless the phone is being used completely hands-free. Your personal injury lawyer will investigate all device-related issues that could have contributed to the accident.
At the Law Office of S. Mark Mitchell, LLC in Newnan, I help people injured in auto accidents recover compensation from negligent drivers. Please call at 470-344-8550 or contact me online to arrange your free consultation today.