As early as April 2017, significant steps were taken against texting and driving to implement harsher punishment. The difficulty now is proving it. There isn’t any question that drunk driving is publicly known as a terrible offense that leads to deaths every day. However, distracted driving like texting and driving, which carries the same consequences, is handled as a secondary offense.
A growing percentage of people who are in accidents do not admit to texting. So, what happens in these texting and driving accidents? It seems like that person should be accountable. We have the information here on how to prove distracted driving in Cleveland, Ohio.
Is Texting and Driving Illegal in Ohio?
It is illegal for any driver in Cleveland, Ohio to text and drive. These texting and driving car accidents are most often preventable. There is a growing rate of manufacturers who are installing hands-free devices in their vehicles to make it easier for consumers to stay connected while on the road. Even so, texting and driving accidents still happen all the time.
Even though texting and driving can cause serious car accidents, for adults, this is only considered a secondary offense. This means that an officer can’t pull over an adult based on texting and driving alone. So, an actual texting and driving car accident must happen for an adult to be exposed. Not to mention the law does not cover the entirety of phone use. It is illegal in Cleveland, Ohio, for adults to write, send or read a text-based communication. Whereas for minors it also is illegal to:
- Talk on the phone (including hands-free)
- Use a GPS
- Play games
This gap allows adults to get away with much more than teens, enabling distracted driving all over Cleveland, Ohio. In the end, texting and driving for adults is a fine of no more than $150.
Texting and Driving Car Accidents
Distracted driving is recognized by local, state, and federal sectors of the government as a “killer” and the likely cause of many fatalities in car accidents. If a driver is texting and driving, they are possibly liable for any injuries sustained by the other party because of the accident.
Cleveland, Ohio has a set of laws which allow victims of texting and driving car accidents to pursue damages outside of insurance claims. Victims can file civil claims for personal injury, wrongful death, and property damage due to texting and driving negligence. For this to happen, the injured person will need to prove that the driver at fault was negligent and distracted when on the road. Years ago, this was difficult. However, today it isn’t as hard as it seems.
How Do I Prove They Were Texting?
Proving who is responsible for an accident is usually done by the insurance companies. However, your claims that they were texting and driving could quickly turn into a battle of “he said, she said.” What makes the situation worse is that the injured victim is likely the one responsible for proving fault when ti comes to the texting and driving accident.
When you file a report with the police after an accident, be sure to inform them of your suspicions. Letting the police know that you believe this is a texting while driving accident is step one in proving negligence. Because of your allegations, the police may write a traffic ticket that will be recorded in their police report and available to you as evidence.
The best proof you can collect to prove the driver was distracted by texting and driving is their phone records. Many cell phone providers record the difference between texting and speaking on the phone. The best companies can also provide information on the phone users location and the exact time a message was sent. To obtain these records, you need a court order. A lawyer can help you with this process.
Contact an Ohio Car Accident Attorney to Discuss Your Texting and Driving Accident
Attorneys can help you establish your case so you can prove that the other driver was responsible for your accident in Cleveland, Ohio. If you are in a texting and driving car accident, your insurance company may not cover all the damages you experienced. This can include not only the damage done to your vehicle, but also any personal injuries you sustain. The good news is, you may be able to seek this compensation from the other driver by proving they were texting while driving. The Chester Law Group can help you with a case review. Contact the office of the Chester Law Group today to discuss the details of your case.