48 out of 50 states have bans on text messaging while driving, so it may be easy to incorrectly think that problems with distracted driving are a thing of the past. Unfortunately, the rates of cell phone use while driving still remain high across the country, posing a risk to everyone on the road and leading to higher rates of distracted driving accidents.
When you’re in an accident and you believe a distracted driver was responsible, you may want to do everything in your power to ensure they’re held liable for the damages they’ve caused. Calling the police and submitting a verbal statement after an accident is the first step to making sure a distracted driver is brought to justice. Once the dust has settled and you’re left with the medical bills, lost wages from missed work, and continuing pain and suffering as a result of the accident, seeking the help of a Carolinas car accident attorney can help you increase the odds that you recover the maximum possible damages.
If you believe a driver involved in your North or South Carolina car was distracted by their handheld device, Auger & Auger can help you fight to prove their negligence. We’ve assisted the victims of distracted driving accidents to recover damages in numerous instances and can help you do the same. Let us focus on your financial recovery while you work towards healing. Call us at (800) 559-5741 or contact us online to get set up with a free, no-risk consultation today.
The Consequences of Distracted Driving
In 2018, over 2,800 people were killed in US car accidents caused by a distracted driver. Taking your eyes off the road, even for a few seconds, can lead to disastrous consequences, particularly at high speeds. When a driver decided to pick up their phone to read or send a text message, they’re likely to be distracted for 5 to 15 seconds, leading to a significant amount of time for an accident to occur.
South Carolina ranks 5th in careless driving and 11th in speeding. Combine those factors with the inherent dangers of driving without your eyes on the road, and you’re left with a deadly combination. According to the South Carolina Department of Insurance, a majority of careless driving accidents involve cell phone usage. With 982 traffic deaths in 2017, the dangers of driving while texting simply aren’t worth it.
North Carolina is no better. Over 54,000 distracted driving accidents were reported in North Carolina in 2017, accounting for nearly 20% of all accidents. This problem is particularly bad amongst the younger generation of drivers; nearly 28% of all accidents among drivers under the age of 18 were caused by distractions.
Handheld Laws in North and South Carolina
Both North and South Carolina have a ban on texting while driving, but that doesn’t always keep drivers from picking up their phones. As handheld devices gain new functionalities, they’re used for far more than simply texting and making calls. The legislation doesn’t always keep up with the extended uses of these devices, however, and though both of the Carolinas impose punishments for texting while driving, there is no overarching hand-held ban in either state.
This means that while emailing, texting, and taking hand-held calls could lead to a fine or reckless driving charge in some extreme cases, using GPS, starting and stopping music, or even browsing social media may not technically be against the law.
Stay Safe on Carolina Roads
One thing to remember is that the only way to drive safely is to ensure your full attention is on driving. This means no snacking, no fiddling with the radio, no answering phone calls, and no texting. While you can’t guarantee other drivers on the road will drive with the same caution, you can at least be prepared to maneuver quickly in the case of an emergency.
When preparing to drive, be sure to have everything prepared before leaving the parking lot. If you’re using a GPS service or playing music on your phone, make sure you have everything properly set up before shifting into drive. If anything comes up and you need to make an adjustment, find a safe place to pull off the road and use your phone when you’re safely stopped.
Pursue Damages Against Negligent Distracted Drivers
As diligent and careful as you may be, sometimes the carelessness of other drivers causes an accident you can’t avoid. In these cases, fighting to prove negligence and recover the maximum possible damages to cover your losses is one of the only avenues for justice. When you do everything you can to stay safe on Carolina roads and you still wind up in a bad accident, seeking help from a seasoned car accident attorney may be your best bet at getting back to your normal life.
Auger & Auger has decades of experience fighting for the rights of the victims of accidents caused by distracted drivers. We are determined to seek every source of compensation to cover your damages and bring negligent parties to justice. If you’re currently recovering from an accident caused by a distracted driver, call us at or contact us online to schedule a consultation in the near future. There’s no risk or charge to you, so call (800) 559-5741 or contact us online today to get started as soon as possible.