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Distracted Driving Accident Lawyer in Kissimmee

Based on distracted driving statistics, in 2018, Florida reported slightly more than 400,000 crashes, with over one-fourth involving distracted drivers. The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles identifies distracted driving incidents as those involving:

  • Use of electronic communication devices like cell phones
  • Engagement with other electronic devices, such as navigation systems or DVD players
  • Internal distractions within the vehicle
  • External distractions
  • Texting while driving
  • Inattention

Distracted driving poses a significant risk, leading to 236 confirmed deaths in Florida in 2018 alone. Additionally, it resulted in 3,100 incapacitating injuries, 12,598 non-incapacitating injuries, and 29,337 other possible injuries.

These tragic outcomes underscore the importance of holding distracted drivers accountable for their actions.

At The Ward Law Group, our team of Kissimmee distracted driving accident lawyers is dedicated to assisting car accident victims in Osceola County.

We work tirelessly to ensure that those responsible for causing significant injuries due to texting while driving or other distractions are held accountable.

Understanding Distracted Driving

Distracted driving involves an activity that diverts a driver's attention from safely operating a vehicle.

While distractions like eating, grooming, and reading maps have existed for decades, modern technology has introduced new forms of distraction, such as texting, checking social media, and adjusting GPS settings.

Safety experts classify distracted driving into three main categories:

  1. Visual Distractions: These distractions involve taking your eyes off the task at hand. Typical examples are reading texts, checking maps, or glancing at work-related examples. Even brief visual distractions can have severe consequences, as a split-second lapse in attention can lead to accidents.
  2. Manual Distractions: Manual distractions occur when drivers take their hands off the wheel. Programming GPS devices, adjusting infotainment systems, or engaging in activities like eating or applying makeup while driving fall into this category. Manual distractions can impair a driver's ability to react quickly to potential hazards, such as visual distractions.
  3. Cognitive Distractions: Cognitive distractions involve taking your mind off driving. While driving may seem routine for experienced drivers, allowing your mind to wander or focusing on non-driving-related tasks can impair your ability to react to changing road conditions and texting, daydreaming, or engaging in intense conversations of cognitive distractions.

Some behaviors involve multiple types of distractions, amplifying the risk of accidents. Even after the distracting behavior ceases, it takes several minutes for a driver's attention to fully return to the road, highlighting the dangers of cognitive distractions in particular.

At The Ward Law Group, we are committed to protecting the rights of the Hispanic-American community in Florida and New York. We offer legal guidance and support to all victims of distracted driving accidents, helping them explore the best available legal options for seeking compensation and justice.

Understanding Florida's Distracted Driving Laws

In mid-2019, Florida updated its laws regarding distracted driving, mainly focusing on texting while driving. It is now illegal to manually enter letters, numbers, or other characters into a phone while operating a motor vehicle.

This includes texting, emailing, instant messaging, or other non-voice communication functions while driving. Previously classified as a secondary offense, violating this law is now considered a primary offense, meaning law enforcement can pull over and cite drivers solely for texting while driving.

While warnings were issued throughout the remainder of 2019, enforcement escalated in 2020, with police officers issuing tickets and fines for violations.

While actions like talking on a handheld device while driving or texting while stopped at a red light may technically be legal under current law, they are still considered distracting behaviors that increase the risk of motor vehicle crashes or pedestrian accidents.

The safest action is to refrain from using your phone until reaching your destination. Other handheld phones are explicitly prohibited while driving through school zones, school crossings, or construction work zones.

These measures aim to enhance road safety and reduce the prevalence of distracted driving-related incidents across Florida.

The Dangers of Texting While Driving

Texting or using a mobile device while driving is not only dangerous but also potentially more hazardous than driving under the influence of alcohol. Recent studies underscore the severity of this issue, revealing alarming statistics:

  • Thousands of individuals are killed or injured by distracted drivers each year. In the most recent data available, over 421,000 people suffered injuries in distracted driving incidents, with an additional 3,300 losing their lives.
  • Cellphone use is a leading cause of such accidents, particularly among teenage drivers. A federal survey found that cellphone use contributed to nearly a quarter of fatal accidents involving teenage drivers.
  • Even a single text can have deadly consequences. Research indicates that sending or receiving a text can distract a driver for the same duration it takes to drive 100. Moreover, using a phone or other device while driving triples the likelihood of being involved in an auto accident.

If you've been involved in an accident caused by texting, phone use, or other dangerous behaviors, the responsible driver may be held legally accountable for your injuries.

At The Ward Law Group, we are dedicated to advocating for victims of distracted driving accidents and ensuring that they receive the compensation they deserve for their injuries.

What to Do if You're a Victim of Distracted Driving

If you find yourself a victim of distracted driving, it's crucial to take proper steps to protect yourself and your legal rights:

  1. Cooperate with Law Enforcement: When the police arrive at the scene, provide them with your account of the accident and any observations regarding the other driver's distraction. It is essential to be honest and forthcoming with information. If you're unsure about something, it's okay to admit it. You can always provide additional details later if needed.
  1. Document Everything: Start a detailed notebook to record important information such as dates, events, and any impacts the accident has had on you. These notes can serve as valuable evidence later on.
  1. Seek Legal Assistance: Contact The Ward Law Group as soon as possible. Our experienced attorneys are ready to begin working on your case immediately. If your insurance company contacts you, refrain from providing a statement until you've consulted with our team. We're here to support you and ensure that your rights are protected.

Building Your Case

You may be concerned about how to prove that distracted driving caused the accident. In such a site, seeking guidance from a qualified attorney like those at The Ward L is essential Group. With multiple offices across Florida, meeting with you and discussing your case is convenient our case.

We understand your challenges and are committed to helping you navigate them, ensuring that you receive the compensation you deserve, and moving forward with your life.

Tips for Avoiding Distracted Driving

While some distractions on the road are unavoidable, it's crucial to manage them effectively to ensure safe driving. Maintaining focus while behind the wheel is essential, and you can take proactive steps to eliminate distractions and concentrate on the road ahead.

Here are some helpful tips inspired by AA to help you avoid distractions while driving:

Stay Fully Focused solely on driving. Constantly scan the road, use your mirrors, and remain alert for pedestrians and cyclists.

Secure Loose Items: Store loose gear and belongings securely in your car to prevent them from rolling around and tempting you to reach for them while driving.

Preparation is Key: Make all necessary adjustments, such as seat position, mirrors, and climate controls, before starting your journey. Plan your route and check traffic conditions in advance.

Finish Preparations at Home: Complete any last-minute preparations before getting behind the wheel, rather than attempting them while driving.

Choose Smart Snacks: If you need to eat while driving, choose easy-to-handle snacks and avoid messy foods that could distract you.

Secure Passengers: Ensure children are properly secured before starting your journey. If they require attention, pull over safely to assist them rather than reaching into the backseat while driving.

Put Away Your Phone: Avoid using your cell phone for texting, emailing, gaming, or browsing social media while driving. Keep it out of reach or turn it off to eliminate temptation.

Utilize Passengers: If you have passengers, enlist their help as co-pilots so you can focus on driving safely.

Handle Tasks Off the Road: If you need to attend to other tasks, pull over to a safe location before you turn. Turn off your phone or store it out of reach to prevent distractions.

Prioritize Driving: If another activity distracts you from driving, address it before or after your trip rather than while behind the wheel. Following these guidelines and prioritizing safe driving practices can reduce distractions and enhance road safety for yourself and others. At The Ward Law Group, we are committed to promoting responsible driving habits and protecting the rights of those affected by distracted driving accidents.

Contact a Kissimmee Distracted Driving Accident Lawyer

At The Ward Law Group, we advocate for the mindful pursuit of justice and healing in the present moment. By honoring our duties and responsibilities today, we pave the way for a brighter tone where justice prevents suffering from finding its end.

Contact The Ward Law Group if you have been a car accident victim and need the best legal advice to proceed with your case! Call now at 855-DOLOR-55 for help!