Dangers of distracted driving in Virginia

Dangers of Distracted Driving in Virginia

Distracted driving causes thousands of accidents each year—some of them fatal. It’s also against the law. Our Virginia car accident lawyers discuss what is allowed by law when you are behind the wheel of a vehicle, the ways distracted driving can occur, and why it is so dangerous.

Types of Distracted Driving

Some types of distracted driving may surprise you. You may have incorporated many of these behaviors into your everyday driving habits and not even be aware of how dangerous they may be. Understanding all of the ways one can be distracted while driving can help prevent participating in these behaviors and lessen the chances of being in an accident as a result.

Distracted driving can be broken into three categories:

  1. Cognitive
  2. Manual
  3. Visual

Cognitive Distraction 

Though all forms of distracted driving are dangerous, cognitive distracted driving carries the highest risk. This includes talking on the phone while driving or participating in conversations while driving, but can also include emotions or substances that interfere with the driver’s focus, such as road rage, driving while sleepy or drowsy, or driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. If your attention is not fully focused on the road, an accident can happen in a split second. 

Manual Distraction

Texting while driving is one of the most prevalent types of manual distractions when behind the wheel. Drivers who have been responsible for serious accidents as a result of texting and driving wish more than anything that they could go back and make a different decision. No text is more important than your life or the life of others on the road. The “It Can Wait” campaign focuses on waiting until you are in a safe place to respond to a text. 

Other forms of manual distraction may be things you think you have mastered, such as eating or drinking while driving, operating the radio, or an onboard or cellphone navigation system. But all of these are forms of manual distraction that can lead to an accident with devastating consequences.

Visual Distraction

A visual distraction can be anything that draws the driver’s attention away from the road. This can be looking at a sign or billboard, looking back at a pet or child in the back seat, fumbling for something under your seat that fell, or even “rubbernecking” or looking at a crash at the side of the road. Anything that takes your eyes off the road can be a visual distraction, a dangerous form of distracted driving.

How a Virginia Accident Lawyer Can Help

If you've been injured in an accident caused by a distracted driver, seeking the assistance of an experienced Virginia car accident lawyer at Dulaney, Lauer & Thomas can be crucial to navigating the legal complexities of a car accident and securing the compensation you deserve for your injuries or loss.  

A skilled Virginia car accident lawyer will thoroughly investigate the circumstances surrounding the accident. They will do this by gathering crucial evidence to support your claim, such as medical and police reports and eyewitness testimony. This evidence can be used to establish liability and demonstrate the negligent behavior of the distracted driver. 

Your lawyer will work to determine the extent of your injuries and the impact they have had on your life. If another driver is found negligent, you could recover damages such as:

  • Medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Loss of future income earnings
  • Pain and suffering
  • Property damage
  • Out-of-pocket costs

A car accident lawyer will negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf, advocating for a fair settlement that adequately compensates you for your losses. If a settlement cannot be reached with the insurance company, your lawyer will be prepared to take your case to court and fight for your rights before a judge and jury.

Furthermore, an experienced car accident lawyer can give you guidance and support throughout the legal process, offering clarity on your rights and options. They can also help to alleviate the stress and uncertainty that often accompanies personal injury claims.

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Working with Andrew and his team has been--without exception--one of the most pleasant, productive, and professional experiences of my adult life. I was seriously injured in an accident in July, 2018, in Virginia. I was driving a company vehicle that was registered in Maryland, for a company that was based in Wisconsin. And I live in New Jersey, where my personal vehicles are insured. The several jurisdictions involved presented a very unique case that demanded an experienced and nuanced strategy. I found Andrew Thomas (of Dulaney, Lauer, & Thomas) through some online research. And it is noteworthy that Andrew has worked the other side of the aisle--he used to work with insurance companies. Andrew took on my case with the assurance that he would work it with no less energy than he does each of his cases. At each turn, and with each question I had, Andrew and Paralegal Misty kept me informed, returned my calls, provided detailed explanations, and kept me feeling like I was in the loop and there was an eventual end to our journey. Nearly five years after the accident, we settled out of court for a significant sum in recognition of my personal injuries. The settlement was much more than I had expected. And without Andrew & Misty, I am sure the award would have been much less. If you are looking for professionalism, knowledge, dedication, answerability, responsiveness, integrity, and human-level communication from a personal injury attorney--look no further. You have found him. Thank you, Andrew and Misty. Gary Daley
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