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Your Clearwater and St. Petersburg Personal Injury Law Firm

Clearwater Distracted Driving Injuries

Florida Distracted Driving Injury Lawyers

Distracted DrivingDistracted driving is becoming an epidemic in our need-to-be-connected-at-all-times society. This is likely due to the rise and advances of cell phone technology and the unfortunate public perception that texting, emailing, and talking while driving is acceptable behavior. In reality, many experts believe that texting while driving may be even more dangerous than driving while intoxicated.

However, texting while driving is not the only form of distracted driving. Doing ANYTHING besides primarily focusing on the road is considered distracted driving. In 2012, one person was injured every 75 seconds due to distracted driving, and of those victims, 3,328 people were killed.

Forms of Distracted Driving

• Texting while driving
• Eating and drinking
• Staring out an outside person, thing or event such as an animal, a crash scene, or road construction
• Adjusting a radio, cassette, compact disc player, Ipod, or GPS device
• Talking, arguing, or assisting another passenger or child in the vehicle
• Distracted by a moving object in the vehicle such as a pet, insect, or an object falling off the seat
• Lighting, smoking, or dropping a cigarette
• Dialing, talking, listening, or reaching for a cell phone
• Reaching for another item in the vehicle such as a water bottle, purse, or sun glasses
• Using a device integral to the vehicle such as adjusting mirrors, lights, or seatbelt
• Dealing with a medical issue, looking at a map or road sign, sleepiness or fatigue
• Inattentive thought or lost in thought

Who are Distracted Drivers?

Even though they are many, many ways to be distracted while driving, especially since many people view driving as secondary task and great time to catch up on something that they wouldn’t have time for during the day, texting and talking while driving still take the cake.

One in seven people admit to text messaging while driving. 46 percent of 16- and 17-year-old drivers say they text while driving, and 48 percent of 18- to 20-year-old drivers text message while driving. 67 percent of 25- to 34-year-old drivers talk on their cell phones while driving, with 65 percent of drivers with a college education admitting to talking on their cell phones while driving. The higher the level of education, the higher use of the cell phones.

How Many States have Laws Banning Cell Phone Use While Driving?

There is been an encouraging trend is the last couple of years as more and more states are beginning to recognize the dangers of cell phone use at the wheel. Currently, there are 13 states, including Washington D.C., that have a complete hand-held ban on cell phones. There are now 44 states that have a law against texting while driving, either labeling it as a primary offense or secondary offense.

Distracted Driving in Florida

In Florida, texting while driving is a secondary offense — meaning that drivers can only be stopped if they commit another violation. This law, however, is proving difficult to enforce. With an estimated 40,000 Florida drivers distracted by technology at any moment during daylight hours, there have been more citations issued for failure to dim lights than texting while driving. In the laws first year, it is estimated that only 1,800 citations will be issued.

With so many distracted drivers on the road and no proven way to prevent such behavior, often the only way awareness is raised is through tragedy. Just this past year, a young Clearwater woman lost her life when a driver, distracted by checking his cell phone, proceeded through a red light and struck the unfortunate woman in the intersection.

In Tampa, a driver lost control of his automobile and veered off the street and plowed into a home. Fortunately no one was killed but the driver later admitted to checking a text.

Until State Legislature decides to the make the act of texting while driving a primary offense, law enforcement will continue having trouble enforcing the ban and tragic accidents will continue to happen.

What do you do After Getting Hit by a Distracted Driver?

The Dolman Law Group is committed to fighting to obtain fair compensation for victims who have suffered physical harm as a result of a distracted driver. A driver who causes a motor vehicle or motorcycle accident due to cell phone use is negligent and may be subjected to punitive damages.

We employ a full-time investigator in order to seek witness statements relating to automobile accident and motorcycle accident cases. Further, we seek information relating to the at-fault party’s cellular phone number and provider so we may request phone records via a subpoena if we are unsuccessful in determining whether a phone was used at the time of impact.

If you have been insured as a result of the negligence exhibited by a distracted driver, please call us at (727) 451-6900 for a free consultation. The attorneys at the Dolman law Group handle injury claims throughout the State of Florida and maintain an active statewide litigation practice.

Dolman Law Group is a personal injury and civil trial law firm based in Clearwater, Florida. Located in central Pinellas County (10 minutes from St. Petersburg and 15 minutes from Tampa), the attorneys at Dolman Law Group represent only consumers and never will or have ever represented an insurance carrier. We routinely litigate personal injury claims throughout the State of Florida and actively represent plaintiffs in Pinellas, Hillsborough, Pasco, Manatee, Sarasota and Polk County. Dolman Law Group serves the following cities; Clearwater, St. Petersburg, Largo, Pinellas Park, Palm Harbor, Safety Harbor, Dunedin, Ozona, Tarpon Springs, Tampa, Carrolwood, New Tampa, Oldsmar, Trinity, New Port Richey, Port Richey, Hudson, Spring Hill, Bradenton and Sarasota.

Dolman Law Group
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33765
727-451-6900