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Salt Lake City Distracted Driving Accident Attorney

Fielding Law Distracted Driving Accident Lawyer

A person doesn’t have to be driving recklessly or breaking laws to cause an accident. They only have to be distracted while driving. One of the largest causes of auto accidents is a driver’s inattention. In the blink of an eye or even in just the time it takes to glance down, a car accident can occur. Hundreds of thousands of vehicle accidents have occurred in recent years because of distracted driving.

Have you or a loved one been injured in an auto accident where distracted driving was the cause? No matter what type of distraction caused the collision, if someone else’s lack of proper care and attention while driving produced your injuries in an accident, you are entitled to receive just compensation for damages. Fielding Law in Salt Lake City is here to help you to recuperate legally with the fair compensation you need.   

What is Distracted Driving?

What is a distracted driver? Basically, it is a driver who is not fully attentive to the circumstances around them and their car as they drive. A person may have been busily occupied by their radio, unwrapping their cheeseburger while trying to not get food on themselves, or even a frustrated parent looking back at their children in the backseat to correct them. All of these and many more are subtle forms that distracted driving can take. Statistics show that it only takes 3 seconds of a driver’s attention being diverted from the road for a crash to occur.

More specifically, though, distracted driving can be quantified in three primary categories.

  1. Cognitive distraction. Simply put, the driver is thinking about something other than driving. Yes, he might be in the car, both hands might even be on the wheel, however, his thought process is somewhere else. Consequently, his attention is not on the road, the cars around him, pedestrians, and so forth. Additionally, cognitive distractions can come in varying degrees. The driver who is daydreaming may be completely distracted cognitively as well as such things as conversing with someone else in the car, or a conversation over a hands-free cell phone can create a dangerous measure of cognitive distraction.
  2.  Manual distraction. This is when something influences the driver to remove their hands from the steering wheel. Even with something as innocent as a pesky insect buzzing around the driver’s face and him trying to shoo it away, at that moment, he has become a distracted driver. When a driver becomes unfocused for longer periods, whether eating, drinking, putting on makeup, or trying to pick something up in the vehicle that dropped, that is driving while distracted and the driver has become a danger to themselves and others.
  3. Visual distraction. The driver removes their attention visually from the task of driving. They no longer are looking at the road, other cars, or pedestrians. Instead, the driver could be looking at something as innocent as beautiful scenery, an appealing billboard, or perhaps something that has occurred and has drawn the driver’s attention away from the road such as an accident in the opposing lanes. Often, accidents happen while drivers are staring at the scene of an accident that had already occurred while they are passing it, thus creating another accident.

 Electronic Messaging While Driving is Distracted Driving

One of the most common and dangerous types of distracted driving is driving while texting, emailing, or sending some other form of electronic message. This is especially dangerous because it combines in one act all three forms of distracted driving mentioned above. The driver is cognitively, manually, and visually distracted when focused on an electronic message. Research compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration goes as far as reporting that texting and driving at 55 miles per hour is the equivalent of driving the length of a football field with the driver’s eyes closed.

The state of Utah recognized this danger and in 2009, a law was passed that prohibited texting while operating a moving vehicle. Then, in 2011, texting was added to the distracted driving options on a police traffic crash report. The Utah Department of Public Safety—Highway Safety Office report shows that 15% of distracted driving auto accidents in Utah in 2016 were as a result of cell phone use while driving.

Why Distracted Driving Is So Serious

 The image of a person stumbling toward their car while leaving a bar and then getting behind the wheel to drive while intoxicated is a blatant and flagrant form of wrong behavior connected to driving. Just imagining this scene can cause blood to boil in many. Although, not as shocking as this drunk driver image, distracted driving has come to be known as the “new drunk driving”.

One of the reasons that distracted driving has been compared to drunk driving is because it follows the same psychological pattern. When a driver is able to get away with driving distracted, they continue in this bad habit until an accident occurs or until they are caught and have to suffer the consequences.

Unfortunately, because of this, in recent years, research has indicated that hundreds of thousands of injuries from auto accidents have been connected to distracted driving-related accidents. Clearly, distracted driving is a very serious matter and can result in an accident from a minor fender bender to something much worse like a fatal collision.

 Proving Negligence in Your Distracted Driving Case

 If you have been injured in an accident caused by distracted driving, you should seek assistance from an attorney that will pursue your legal rights passionately. Having a lawyer on your side is key to legally proving negligence on the part of the distracted driver who caused the accident. Your attorney will need to show that all four elements of negligence existed for your personal injury claim to be a success. These four elements are:

  • Duty—Each driver owes a duty of care to all other people to drive safely and responsibly.
  • Breach—Your attorney must prove that the distracted driver did not live up to this duty of care. This “breach” of duty primarily means proving that the driver was distracted when the accident occurred.
  • Causation—Your attorney must show that the cause of the accident was because of the driver’s distraction, and not because of some other unrelated cause.
  • Damages— Your attorney must prove that you have suffered “damages”, or losses and injuries, because of the accident caused by a distracted driver. This includes any physical damage to your vehicle, and any physical as well as emotional suffering you have experienced.

The Fielding Law Legal Team Wants to Help You

The physical pain and emotional trauma that results from the losses and injuries caused because of a negligent driver are distressing enough on their own. The legal process to receive the compensation you deserve shouldn’t be as well. The legal team at Fielding Law in Salt Lake City wants to aid you in receiving the compensation you are entitled to for your medical expenses, lost wages, future lost income, pain and suffering, and other damages that you have experienced.

Don’t delay in acquiring the experienced legal representation that you need to make sure that the outcome of your case will be as successful as possible. Contact Fielding Law to schedule a free consultation. Our attorneys have a strong desire to assist you in recovering as much as possible after such a traumatic event as a distracted driving accident.