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It is essential for truck drivers to remain focused on the road ahead of them. Because trucks are so unwieldy and their response times are slowed, truckers must stay attentive behind the wheel. Using a handheld device to send texts, emails, or engage with apps can serve as a distraction, making a catastrophic collision more likely to occur.
If you sustained injuries in a texting and driving truck accident in Columbus, speak with our qualified truck accident attorneys as soon as possible. Legal counsel could help you pursue compensation from the negligent trucker and their employer. These damages could cover any related medical costs and time away from work and compensate you for your pain and suffering.
Severe injuries are possible in any vehicle accident, but when a truck and a passenger vehicle collide, the car and its occupants could sustain life-altering harm.
Large tractor-trailers can weigh 40 times more than the average car, so it is not surprising that occupants of these smaller vehicles sustain most of the fatalities and injuries in Columbus texting and driving truck collisions.
Lacerations and fractures to the extremities are common in truck accidents. Back and neck injuries ranging from hyperextensions to dislocated or fractured discs could result from the sudden forceful impact. Seatbelts and airbags could cause fractures to the clavicle and ribs. Shrapnel or forceful contact with the steering column or windshield could cause facial injuries.
Truck accident victims could suffer severe, permanent injuries such as head trauma and spinal cord damage. Organ damage and internal bleeding could occur. Decapitation or partial decapitation could occur if the smaller vehicle slides under the truck.
Driving while distracted is a well-known hazard, and many states have banned motorists from using their cell phones while driving. Ohio Revised Code §4511.204 prohibits drivers from using a handheld device to write or read text while operating a vehicle. Anyone that violates this regulation faces significant fines.
Trucks require excessive time to stop entirely, making driving a truck while texting substantially more dangerous. The average texting driver needs almost five seconds to look at a text. If their truck is traveling at the speed limit, they could cover the length of a football field in those five seconds. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), Columbus truckers that are texting while driving are much more likely to get into an accident, nearly crash, or unintentionally leave their lane if they are texting.
Holders of commercial driving licenses may face fines up to $2750 if they text while driving. They also could lose their commercial licenses for up to 120 days. Our attorneys could help prove that a distracted trucker caused an accident because they were texting. Violating the state law and federal rules against texting while driving is known as negligence per se.
Someone who has suffered injuries in a Columbus texting while driving truck accident might need significant time to recover or adapt to permanent injuries. Enlisting the help of an attorney to represent them during their recovery is a wise decision. Although state law provides accident victims seeking damages for injuries two years to file a lawsuit, a trucking company insurance carrier might offer a quick settlement to an injured person while they are still in the hospital.
These initial offers rarely represent reasonable compensation for an accident victim’s injuries. In many cases, it is not possible to even calculate what someone’s damages might be until weeks or months after the crash. If the injured party has an attorney, the legal professional could handle communication with the insurer and protect the accident victim from pressure tactics.
In addition to managing contact with the insurance company, an attorney could immediately begin building a case against the trucking company and driver. They could subpoena records and interview witnesses before the evidence erodes or memories fade. Waiting to collect evidence risks it becoming unavailable, which could weaken an injured person’s negotiating position.
The laws and federal regulations pertaining to distracted driving are clear. There is no excuse for a truck driver to be texting while operating their rig. If they do so, they and their employer could be legally responsible for any harm caused.
If you sustained injuries in a texting and driving truck accident in Columbus, contact O’Connor Acciani & Levy CO. as soon as possible. Our lawyers could help you pursue justice for your avoidable harm. Call today.