Distracted Driving and Your Legal Rights
Today we find more and more accidents being caused by what is called “the distracted driver”. Because of new handheld technology, we find that drivers are becoming far more distracted with less attention on the road in front of them. Distracted driving is not only a problem here in Ontario and the GTA but is becoming a problem in most parts of the world. A driver using a phone while operating a motor vehicle is four times as likely to cause a crash than one who is focusing on the road. In fact in Ontario alone, data from 2013 shows that a person is injured in a distracted driving accident every half hour. One person is killed on Ontario’s roads every 17 hours.
Operating a Handheld Device While Driving is Against the Law
Distracted driving refers to any behavior that takes a driver’s immediate attention away from the road. If a driver is not totally focused while operating a motor vehicle, he or she can be a danger to pedestrians and other drivers. This can include:
● Speaking on a cellphone without hands-free capability
● Texting while driving
● Watching any type of entertainment device while driving
● Checking maps or adding information to the GPS
Just a split second of driver distraction can have life-threatening results. In fact, distracted drivers can show the same type of behaviors as an intoxicated driver like driving erratically or swerving into another lane. In Ontario, it is against the law to use any handheld device while operating a motor vehicle.
You May Be Entitled to Compensation
If you have been injured in an accident due to a distracted driver, you may be entitled to financial compensation from the at-fault party. An injury lawyer in Kitchener will be able to represent a claim against the driver or represent you in a court of law. In many cases, the insurance company representing the driver may not offer a settlement that offsets the cost of your injuries sufficiently. It is in your best interest to get legal advice before accepting any insurance settlements.
Know Your Rights After a Distracted Driving Accident
Your Kitchener personal injury lawyer will fully explain your rights as the injured party, He or she will then document the accident and secure evidence in order that your rights are being protected. Insurance claims will use research data to pay a claim whereas an injury lawyer will painstakingly investigate the accident and the ensuing injury making sure that all medical costs are reimbursed.
When you have been injured in an accident where there was a distracted driver at fault, make sure you get legal advice to ensure that your compensation is sufficient and your rights are being protected as the victim. For more information, call the Kitchener personal injury team at ABPC Law for a no-cost, no-obligation consultation.