Texting while driving a truck is illegal on the roadways. Nevertheless, truck operators regularly get behind the wheel and violate these rules, recklessly putting themselves and others in danger.
By holding irresponsible motorists accountable for a texting and driving truck accident in Chattanooga, injured parties can obtain compensation for their damages. A skilled truck wreck attorney could assist you by investigating the accident and filing a lawsuit on your behalf.
Maneuvering a truck can be difficult, as these large, heavy vehicles require additional time to brake and change direction. Drivers must anticipate unexpected weather conditions, unplanned road obstacles, and sudden lane changes by other drivers. Safely driving a truck given these conditions is almost impossible when the operator is distracted by their cellphone.
Tennessee has enhanced its prohibitions against texting and driving to reduce the devastating effects of distracted driving, particularly in collisions involving large commercial trucks. Under Tennessee Code Annotated §55-8-199, a person cannot hold, support, or reach for any electronic device while operating a motor vehicle. This restriction includes writing, sending, or reading any text-based communication.
A conviction for violating state texting and driving laws could affect a personal injury claim for damages. A dedicated local lawyer could further explain the interplay between criminal charges and compensation in a civil case.
While the state’s laws banning truck drivers from texting while driving are clear, demonstrating the distracted driving can be difficult. To sustain a lawsuit for damages, an injured party must prove that the driver acted negligently. Specifically, they must demonstrate that the truck operator:
Additionally, the state follows the law of modified comparative negligence. A judge or jury may assign a percentage of liability for each party involved in the collision and then award damages based on the assigned percentage. Accordingly, if a victim proves that the truck operator’s texting contributed to the crash, their compensation may be reduced if they were partially at fault for the accident.
The state’s negligence laws are complex, and presenting a distracted driving claim can be challenging, even with clear evidence of texting. A truck accident victim is well-advised to seek legal counsel to help ensure maximum compensation.
While not impossible, it is unlikely that someone took a picture of a truck driver texting just before an accident. As such, an injured party must prove their case by other means. A practiced attorney in the area could obtain police reports, traffic camera videos, and cell phone records to demonstrate distracted driving. Additionally, injured parties can enlist the help of certified accident investigators to ensure truck owners and operators do not escape liability for a texting and driving truck collision.
Suffering an injury because someone chose to use their cellphone while operating a commercial rig is frustrating and painful. However, you can hold the responsible parties accountable with assistance from an experienced attorney. Our firm is experienced with Chattanooga’s texting and driving laws and could fight for your rightful compensation and help put the truck crash behind you. Reach out today to schedule your consultation.