Injured in a Car Accident by a Distracted Driver in Pittsburgh?
The use of cell phones, GPS and texting while driving has caused an increase in distracted driving accidents in recent years. Under Pennsylvania law it is illegal to text and drive, but negligent driving can stem from other forms of distracted driving.
Anytime a driver engages in an activity that takes their focus off driving (such as texting, eating or talking) they are distracted driving. Their negligence can lead to serious injuries through a head-on crash or a rear end collision.
When an accident occurs due to a driver not paying attention and driving in a negligently and recklessly manner, they should be held responsible for their actions.
If you or your loved one were the victims of a serious injury or wrongful death involving a distracted or negligent driver, you may be able to collect compensation for injuries, as well as pain and suffering and lost wages.
That is why the car accident attorneys at SMT Legal are aggressive in their fight for getting you the money you deserve. Our attorneys are experienced in representing individuals involved in distracted driving accidents and other motor vehicle accidents.
If you have been involved in an accident involving a distracted driver, contact our law firm for a free case evaluation. We can aggressively fight the insurance companies to get the maximum compensation you deserve.
We offer free case evaluations and do not charge a fee unless we win your case.
What is Distracted Driving?
According to AAA, more than 80% of drivers “cite distraction as a serious problem and a behavior that makes them feel less safe on the road.” At the same time, 87% of drivers admit to risky behaviors behind the wheel, including distracted driving.
Federal estimates suggest distracted driving contributes to 16% of all fatal crashes, which is approximately 5,000 deaths annually.
Distracted driving can be doing any of the following while operating a motor vehicle:
- Using a mobile device
- Watching videos
- Putting on makeup / combing hair / grooming
- Reading / Looking at maps
- Playing with the radio or audio system
- Using a GPS navigation system
- Attending to children / pets
If you have been injured in a distracted driving accident, call for a free legal case evaluation immediately. The more time that lapses, the more difficult it will be to build a strong and winnable case.
Texting While Driving in Pittsburgh –It’s Illegal.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says there are three ways using a cell phone distracts motorists: manually (hands of the wheel), visually (eyes off the wheel) and cognitively (attention diverted).
Under Pennsylvania’s anti-texting law, effective March 8, 2012, drivers are prohibited from using a mobile device to send, read or write text-based communication while the vehicle is in motion. Currently the penalty is a $50 fine and a summary offense on your criminal record.
Under Title 75 § 3316 of the Pennsylvania Code:
No driver shall operate a motor vehicle on a highway or traffic way in this Commonwealth while using an interactive wireless communications device to send, read or write a text-based communication while the vehicle is in motion.
According to PennDOT’s anti-texting information sheet: “the texting ban does NOT include the use of a GPS device, a system or device that is physically or electronically integrated into the vehicle, or a communications device that is affixed to a mass transit vehicle, bus or school bus. The law does not authorize the seizure of an IWCD.”
Proving Fault In A Distracted Driving Accident
If you have been involved in a motor vehicle accident caused by a distracted driver who was operating in a negligently and dangerously, you have a right to attempt to collect compensation for your injuries.
Most insurance companies under Pennsylvania’s no-fault system will cover minor injuries and hospital bills. But other expenses for more serious injuries (lost wages, rehabilitation and wrongful death) will most likely not be covered by the insurance company.
This is where our Pittsburgh car accident lawyers can help. We offer free case evaluations and can speak to you by phone or email, in person at our office or even visit you at home or in the hospital.
If you were involved in an accident caused by a driver who was texting, they may face criminal charges and could be held accountable for civil damages. If you win a civil case against the driver, you could receive payment for lost wages and medical expenses as well as the cost of pain and suffering.
You could also recover compensation from a wrongful death lawsuit, if a loved one was killed by a distracted texting driver. Getting a subpoena for the driver’s cell phone records may be all that it takes to prove gross negligence in a texting while driving accident.
Our Pittsburgh attorneys are here to help answer your questions about getting the maximum compensation owed to you, including:
- Past and future medical expenses;
- Rehabilitation costs and home health care;
- Lost wages;
- Retraining for another profession if you are unable to drive or do the type of work you previously were paid to do;
- Emotional distress;
- Pain and suffering;
- Loss of quality of life;
- Wrongful death
When someone suffers a serious injury, his or her entire family is affected by the catastrophe. Long-term care and chronic pain, as well as depression and a loss of quality of life are enough to deal with: you should not have to worry about expenses as well.
At SMT Legal, we will give your case the personal attention you deserve and do everything possible to get the maximum compensation you deserve. We handle all personal injury cases on a contingency basis, meaning there is no fee unless we win compensation for you. Contact us for more information.