New federal regulations address the increasing problem of truck driver distraction while driving. Severe penalties now exist for commercial drivers (including 18-wheelers) who use cell phones while driving. If you are the victim of a truck accident it is important to have an experienced truck accident attorney in Clayton County.
A new law applicable nationwide prohibits commercial drivers from using any handheld cell phones or texting devices while operating a vehicle on the highway even if the vehicle is temporarily stalled in traffic. Tractor-trailer drivers who violate the law may be fined up to $2,750. Truck drivers may lose their licenses after two or more offenses. Trucking companies associated with the offending truck drivers face fines of up to $11,000.
Recent findings in Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration studies include:
- Truck drivers dialing a cell phone are 5.9 times more likely to be in an accident.
- Truck drivers who text while driving are 23.2 times more likely to get into an accident.
- Truck drivers using dispatching systems are 8.9 times more likely to be in an accident.
- Truck drivers who reach for a cell phone are 6.7 times more likely to be in an accident.
- Truck drivers who look at a map are 7 times more likely to have an accident.
Georgia truck accident victims who believe a truck driver was using a cell phone at the time of an accident should seek the assistance of an experienced Georgia truck accident attorney. The attorney can subpoena cell phone records to prove that the trucker was using the phone at the time of the crash. An attorney can also depose the truck driver and possibly the person the driver was talking to in cell phone records to get sworn testimony.
Evidence that a truck driver was distracted and that this contributed to the accident could cause the truck driver, the trucking company and its insurance carrier to be found legally responsible for a victim's injuries and damages. This may include loss of wages, medical expenses and property damage. If you or someone you know has been hurt by a distracted truck driver, meet with a truck accident lawyer at Shane Smith Law. We can assist you in every stage of your case including obtaining the available evidence.