If a driver was texting when he hit my car, can that driver be held responsible?
South Carolina is one of the few states without a statewide ban on texting while driving. However, at least one city, Greenville, has banned the use of cell phones while driving by a local ordinance. In any event, evidence that shows a driver was texting or calling at the time of an automobile accident may still be used to establish fault.
An act does not have to be illegal in order for it to be negligent. For example, it is not illegal to shave while driving. However, because this activity clearly interferes with one’s driving duties, no reasonable driver would engage in this act. If a driver caused a crash because he was shaving behind the wheel, that driver could be held liable for his negligence.
The same line of thinking applies to texting while driving. This is considered to be the most dangerous form of distracted driving. Research shows that texting while driving causes more than 3,000 traffic deaths and 421,000 injuries per year.
The key component in a texting and driving accident case is proving that a driver was, in fact, texting in the moments before a crash. A lawyer can obtain this key evidence by subpoenaing a driver’s cell phone records or interviewing witnesses.
If a driver was acting within the scope of his or her employment at the time of a texting and driving accident (a delivery driver or somebody operating a company vehicle), that driver’s employer can be held liable for accident damages as well.
To learn more, please see our page on Distracted Driving Accidents.
Posted in: Car Accidents