Distracted driving is known to be the leading cause of traffic vehicle accidents on American roads. According to the statistics issued by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2015, over 391,000 people were injured and 3,477 died in auto accidents due to distracted driving. About 660,000 drivers have been found to be distracted by their cell phones while driving, leading to high probability of injuries and death on the road. Many organizations are working towards spreading awareness of the dangers of distracted driving in Illinois in an effort to save as many lives as they can. Moreover, amendments have been made to the Illinois Vehicle Code to ban the usage of any kind of electronic communication device while driving.
Common Sources of Distraction While Driving
A driver is said to be distracted driving if they are engaged in one or more of the following activities while driving:
- Using a communication device
- Adjusting the radio
- Eating or drinking
- Talking to passengers
- Using any type of electronic device
- Getting distracted by what is happening in the surroundings, like witnessing an accident
Ways to Prove Distracted Driving Caused the Accident
While distracted driving accounts for a large number of motor vehicle accidents, gathering supporting evidence to prove your claim can be difficult. Here are a few key sources you can use to establish that the at-fault driver was distracted at the time of the accident:
Testimony of Lay Witnesses
Almost at every accident scene, there are people who witnessed how it all happened. Lay witnesses can be motorists on adjacent lanes, pedestrians, the passengers of the distracted driver’s car, and others. If possible, get their personal information so that they can be contacted later on to get testimony for your case.
Videos and Pictures
Since it is the digital age, there are bound to be someone in the crowd who made a video and took pictures of the incident. You can use them as a piece of evidence to prove your claim. Moreover, there are likely to be surveillance cameras in the area, such as on storefronts, traffic signals, street signs, banks and ATMs, and police car dashboards. If you can get the video that recorded the entire incident, you can easily show that the at-fault driver was distracted when the accident took place.
Your attorney can work with the mobile phone carrier of the at-fault driver and obtain phone records of the time of the accident. They have exact time and date of calls and text messages, allowing you to determine whether they were using their mobile phone when the accident occurred. If so, it can be a valuable piece of evidence to support your claim.
Accident Reconstruction Specialists
Accident reconstruction specialists study the entire accident scene to draw conclusions whether the at-fault driver could have been distracted. They take into account the speed, reaction time, skid marks, force of collision and other signs to paint a picture of how the accident may have happened.
In rare cases, drivers readily admit that they were distracted, which can save you a lot of hassle in getting compensation for your damages. However, if they do not, you should consider working with an experienced auto accident attorney to gather solid evidence and prove your claim. Contact us at (847) 395-2200 or online today to schedule your initial consultation.