A Cleveland Motor Vehicle Accident Attorney on Distracted Drivers and Accidents

Cleveland motor vehicle accident attorney

According to the Department of Transportation, or DOT, distracted driving is an epidemic in this country. Distracted driving may be defined by a Cleveland motor vehicle accident attorney as any activity that diverts a driver’s attention away from the task of driving.

The Statistics

Citing DOT studies, a Cleveland motor vehicle accident attorney reports that in 2012, there were over 420,000 people injured in motor vehicle crashes attributed to distracted driving, which was a 12 percent increase from the previous year.

Types of Driver Distractions

Although texting receives special attention as a major distraction and deservedly so, a Cleveland motor vehicle accident lawyer explains that other activities can be distracting, such as:
  • Any use of a cell phone;
  • Drinking or eating;
  • Speaking with passengers;
  • Reading a map;
  • Using a navigation system; and
  • Adjusting a radio, CD player or MP3 player

The Special Dangers of Texting

Studies researched by a Cleveland motor vehicle accident attorney indicate three fundamental issues in driver distraction:

  • Visual distraction, where the driver is not looking at the road;
  • Manual distraction, where the driver’s hands are not on the wheel; and
  • Cognitive distraction, where the driver’s attention is focused on something other than driving.

A driver who is texting is distracted in all three ways.

Ohio Laws

Ohio has a ban on texting in place for all drivers, but it is what is known as a secondary law for drivers over 18. According to a Cleveland motor vehicle accident lawyer, this means the police must have some reason other than texting for stopping a driver over 18. Ohio’s texting law for drivers 18 and under is a primary law, meaning such a driver can be issued a citation merely for texting. Similarly, all cell phone use is banned for Ohio drivers 18 and under.

Negligence and Negligence Per Se 

A Cleveland motor vehicle accident attorney must establish negligence to recover damages resulting from a motor vehicle accident, which can be difficult to prove in some cases. Under a negligence per se theory, the violation of a safety statute, such as the one banning texting, establishes the negligence. 

Contact a Cleveland Motor Vehicle Accident Lawyer for Legal Advice 

Don’t make the mistake of thinking an insurance company will protect your rights. You need experienced legal counsel to maximize your recovery. Call the Law Office of Shapero & Green, a Cleveland motor vehicle accident attorney group, at 216-831-5100.


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