Distracted driving crashes occur much too frequently in Encinitas and throughout Southern California. Whether a distracted driving collision happens at high speed on the I-5 or on a local road, the consequences can be devastating. In 2020 alone, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that 3,142 people were killed in distracted driving accidents, and thousands more were injured. Drivers of any age can get distracted behind the wheel, and various types of distractions can cause wrecks. Distracted driving often involves the unlawful use of phones for talking or texting, but it can also involve any kind of distraction that takes the driver’s eyes off the road, hands away from the wheel, or mind away from the important task of focusing on the road.
If you were injured in a distracted driving accident in Encinitas, what steps should you take? Our Encinitas car accident attorneys have tips that can help you with your case.
Call 911 to Report the Accident
After any serious distracted driving accident, it is essential to call 911. When you call 911, emergency responders can arrive at the scene to help with emergency medical care, and the police can gather information for a police report. Any police report from the accident can be extremely useful for a distracted driving claim you file later on.
Collect Evidence at the Crash Scene
If your injuries are not severe enough to prevent you from doing so, you should also plan to collect your own evidence at the distracted driving crash scene. You should use your phone to take photos and videos of the accident scene. In addition, you should determine if anyone witnessed the crash, and you should ask them for their contact information. Witnesses can be critical in distracted driving collisions because they might have seen the at-fault motorist texting or talking on a handheld phone, or they might have witnessed the at-fault driver reaching into the backseat or conversing with a passenger just before the crash. While your attorney may be able to obtain electronic evidence — which we will explain shortly — eyewitness testimony can be important if the source of the at-fault driver’s distraction was not a phone or another electronic device.
Have a Medical Assessment As Soon As Possible
You may know that you need to see a doctor after a distracted driving crash, and you need to do so as soon as possible. Whether you have significant pain or you are not currently experiencing any pain at all, it is critical to keep in mind that some car accident injuries do not cause symptoms immediately. However, latent injuries can worsen if you do not get medical care, and some latent injuries can be extremely serious and debilitating.
Report the Distracted Driving Crash to Your Insurance Company
Your insurance policy requires you to report the accident to your own insurer. You should do so as soon as possible.
Seek Advice from a Lawyer About Filing a Claim
Once you have received medical treatment, you should get in touch with a lawyer about your distracted driving accident case. An attorney can help you plan for an insurance claim and for a car accident lawsuit. We can work to obtain evidence that proves the other driver was distracted, such as data from that motorist’s cell phone that shows they were on the phone or sending a text at the time of the crash. Our firm can also ensure that you file your lawsuit in a timely manner and before valuable evidence gets lost. Under California law, most distracted driving accident lawsuits must be filed within two years from the date of the collision.
Contact an Encinitas Distracted Driving Collision Lawyer
Do you need help filing a distracted driving claim or gathering evidence of the other driver’s distraction? An Encinitas car accident attorney at our firm can assist you. Contact the Walton Law Firm today to learn more about how we can help.
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