Proving that another driver was distracted at the time of an accident can be challenging but not impossible. Unfortunately, distracted driving comes in many forms and is a significant cause of accidents. Today, some of the most common forms include behaviors such as texting, talking on the phone, eating, grooming, or engaging with electronic devices. To establish that another driver was distracted and help your case, it’s crucial to gather evidence and follow certain steps. Here are some of the best strategies around proving distracted driving in a personal injury case.
Gather Eyewitness Testimony
If there were witnesses to the accident, interview them to gather their observations. Eyewitnesses may have seen the other driver engaging in distracting activities, such as texting, talking on the phone, or looking away from the road. Their testimonies can provide valuable evidence to support your claim.
Secure Video Evidence
In today’s technology-driven world, video recordings have become increasingly common. Check if there were any surveillance cameras in the vicinity of the accident. Collect footage from traffic cameras, nearby businesses, or dashcams of other drivers. Such videos may capture the distracted behavior of the other driver, such as glancing down at their phone or engaging in other distracting activities.
Obtain Phone Records
If you suspect the other driver was using their phone at the time of the accident, you can request their phone records through legal means. Phone records can show call logs, text messages, or data usage during the relevant time frame. If the records indicate the use of the phone at the time of the accident, it can be compelling evidence of distracted driving.
Utilize Expert Witnesses
Expert witnesses can provide specialized knowledge and opinions that support your claim of distracted driving. Accident reconstruction experts, for example, can analyze the scene, vehicle damage, and other evidence to reconstruct the events leading up to the accident. Human factors experts can evaluate the behavior of the other driver based on their training and experience, offering insight into whether distraction played a role in the collision.
Don’t Forget About Social Media Evidence
Many people are active on social media platforms or use mobile applications while driving. If you suspect the other driver was distracted by their smartphone, consider searching their social media accounts or popular apps for posts, updates, or messages that were made around the time of the accident. Although this evidence may be harder to obtain, it can be valuable in establishing fault in an accident.
Police Reports and Citations
If the police responded to the accident scene, their report can provide crucial information. Look for any citations or notes related to distracted driving or mobile device use. If the other driver was cited for distracted driving, it can significantly strengthen your case. Remember, documenting your own observations and any relevant evidence at the scene is crucial. Take photos or videos of the accident scene, the position of the vehicles, and any visible signs of distraction, such as open food containers or electronic devices.
Contact A Personal Injury Lawyer
Proving distracted driving requires a comprehensive approach, combining different types of evidence and expert opinions. It is essential to work with an experienced personal injury attorney like those at Buchanan Firm who specialize in accident cases and can guide you through the legal process, help gather evidence, and build a strong case on your behalf.
Being able to prove that another driver was distracted during an accident involves collecting as much evidence as possible. By presenting a compelling case, you increase your chances of establishing distracted driving and seeking appropriate compensation for your injuries and damages.