Car Crashes & Cell Phones

As cell phones have become more ubiquitous, the dangers of driving while using them have become a reality everyone has to face.

While laws regarding cell phone use whilst driving are trying to address the problem, the reality is that cell phone use is still a very large and direct cause of alarmingly many car crashes. If you find yourself involved in a cell phone-related car accident, you may be left wondering what your next steps are.

If you are involved in a car accident due to a distracted driver using a cell phone, you should first:

  • Seek medical care immediately if you are injured.
  • Get the other driver's insurance, contact, and driver license information.
  • Document the accident and damages as best you can.
    • This typically involves taking pictures of the scene, the cars involved, and any injuries you suffered.
  • File a police report.
    • Make sure to inform the police that the driver was using a cell phone.

In the moments following the accident, be cautious about confronting or discussing the incident with the other driver, as it could affect any future legal actions that you might wish to take against them.

Proving Cell Phone Use

If you suspect cell phone use was the cause of the accident, you will need to gather evidence that proves that the driver was using a cell phone when the crash occurred. When gathering evidence, do the following:

  • If possible, get statements from witnesses who might have seen the other driver on their cell phone.
  • Make plans to file a subpoena for the distracted driver's phone records either through your attorney or by yourself in small claims court.
  • Keep all of your medical records and bills following the accident, to prove that you were injured as a result of distracted driving.
  • Take photos and keep track of all property losses and damages.

Other than proving cell phone use, the process for dealing with your accident will generally resemble the process of dealing with most car crashes. Check out our Accident Guide to learn about what to do after a car crash in your state.

Distracted Driving & Cell Phones

Distracted driving is a very serious and dangerous act. Accidents caused by distracted driving are among the leading causes of injuries and death, especially among younger drivers.

In almost every state, it is illegal to text and drive. Furthermore, if you're a new driver, most states do not allow you to use a cell phone at all while driving.

The penalties you could face for texting and driving span a wide range.

In some situations, you could only be required to pay a fine. However, if your distracted driving puts others in danger, you could face misdemeanor and/or felony charges.

Depending on the seriousness of the offense, you could spend years in prison as retribution for the damages that you inflicted. It makes you wonder if the seconds it takes to read or send a text message are really worth it.

Cell phone use is only one form of distracted driving. Learn more about the epidemic in our Distracted Driving section, where you can even take a pledge to drive distraction free.

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