Texting and Driving Accidents in Murfreesboro
Unfortunately, with the popularity of smartphones and other cellular devices, texting and driving accidents in Murfreesboro remain a common threat to commuters. While drivers are required to stay off their cell phones while behind the wheel, they do not always comply, putting themselves and others at serious risk of injury. If you or a loved one were hurt in a collision with a distracted motorist, our reliable attorneys at the Miller Injury Firm could help you file a claim for damages.
Tennessee Laws Governing Texting and Driving
In Murfreesboro and throughout Tennessee, a driver cannot use a cellphone unless it is on speaker or Bluetooth, or if they use a headset that allows for hearing outside noise. Novice drivers have even stricter rules governing texting and driving. Novice drivers or drivers below the age of 18 have limitations cannot use cellphones in any way while they are behind the wheel. Failure to comply with local texting and driving laws at the time of a vehicle collision could be evidence of negligence.
How Can Cell Phone Use Impact Liability?
Use of a cellphone by a defendant at the time of an accident can help the injured plaintiff with their case on liability and damages. Evidence of distracted driving or use of any type of illegal device while driving can create a stronger case for negligence and may result in an increase in the amount of damages if the use is found to be extremely reckless.
Notably, use of a cell phone by a plaintiff at the time they are injured in an accident can impact the liability and the amount of the claim. Tennessee is a comparative fault state, meaning if the plaintiff is 50 percent or more at fault for the accident, there can be no recovery. The amount of money in damages can also be reduced by the portion of fault attributed to the driver on the cellphone.
In a unique situation where the injured party and the at fault driver were both found to be using their cellphones at the time of the accident, liability can be attributed to one or the other or both. A Murfreesboro lawyer at the Miller Injury Firm could help someone injured in a collision caused by a texting driver determine their percentage of fault.
Evidence of Driver Cell Phone Use
The types of evidence that will need to be obtained in Murfreesboro car accident claims involving cellphones can include the rate of speed the driver was going and any attempt to stop, which can be found through skid marks or lack thereof. Testimony by witnesses who saw the driver on texting or talking on their cellphone could also be valuable evidence in these cases.
It can also be shown that a cellphone was in use at or close to the time of the accident based on cellphone records, but it is difficult to tell whether there was a call that came in, a call that was placed, and whether the call was actually answered.
Is Consent Required to Seize Phone Records?
Consent is not required in all cases for a law enforcement or insurance agency to obtain phone records of drivers involved in an accident. In a criminal case, the law enforcement can take steps to subpoena or collect such once the lawsuit is filed.
The Miller Injury Firm can subpoena the records or ask that the records be produced if they are in the possession of the driver that caused the accident. When it comes to insurance companies, insurance companies can demand that their insured produce their phone records to the insurance company. If they fail to do so, there is a risk of cancellation of coverage.
Discuss Texting and Driving Accidents with a Murfreesboro Attorney
Despite it being well-known that cell phone use while operating a vehicle is extremely dangerous, texting and driving accidents in Murfreesboro are still common. For this reason, our passionate team of attorneys fight hard to ensure people injured by distracted drivers recover the compensation they are owed. Contact the Miller Injury Firm today to schedule your free case evaluation.