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Distracted Driving Accident Lawyers in North Carolina

Assisting Victims of Texting while Driving & Other Distracted Driving Accidents

North Carolina laws prohibit motor vehicle operators from texting, emailing, and using the internet when they are driving. It is also illegal for a person under the age of 18 with a provisional license to operate a vehicle while using a cell phone unless they are calling their parents. Current statutes also prevent school bus operators from using a cell phone while driving.

Distracted and texting drivers can cause accidents that result in serious injuries and fatalities. If you were hurt in an auto accident in which the other driver was using a cell phone or another electronic device, contact a North Carolina distracted driving attorney at Lanier Law Group.

We have decades of experience representing clients in all types of car accident cases; we can explain your right to compensation and how to file a claim. We offer a free consultation during which your case will be reviewed by a knowledgeable attorney who can provide you with personal injury information and advice regarding the claim process.

To get started with your free consultation, call (855) 757-4204 or contact us online today.

Understanding Distracted Driving

Operating a car, truck, motorcycle, or any motor vehicle is a big responsibility. Drivers are responsible not only for their own safety and the safety of their passengers but also for the safety of other drivers, pedestrians, and anyone on or near the roadway. Unfortunately, some motorists choose to ignore this responsibility by operating a vehicle while distracted. When they do so, they put everyone around them at risk.

Generally speaking, there are three primary types of distracted driving:

  • Physical distraction: This describes instances in which a driver physically removes one or both hands from the steering wheel. Maybe a driver is distracted by a small child in the backseat and reaches back to pick up a toy the child has thrown to the floor of the car, or maybe the driver is eating or drinking behind the wheel. In any case, physical distractions can lead to serious accidents.
  • Visual distraction: This occurs whenever a driver removes his/her eyes from the road. Examples of visual distraction include glancing down to read a text message or send an email, looking down to change the radio station, or turning to look at a passenger in the vehicle. At any time, but especially at high speeds, visual distraction can easily cause the driver to collide into other vehicles, pedestrians, bicyclists, and stationary objects along the roadway.
  • Mental distraction: Mental distractions include things like daydreaming, responding to text messages, browsing social media websites, or even becoming engrossed in a conversation with a passenger. While mental distractions are just as likely to result in an accident as other forms of distracted driving, proving that someone was mentally distracted when an accident occurred can be incredibly difficult. It’s important to work with an experienced North Carolina distracted driving accident lawyer to better your chance of a favorable outcome.

Examples of Common Driver Distractions

A driver can become distracted for many reasons, including but not limited to:

  • Using a cell phone
  • Reading or sending a text message
  • Browsing the internet
  • Looking at or posting to social media
  • Taking pictures or recording videos
  • Adjusting a radio or CD player
  • Changing the music on a cell phone or similar device
  • Adjusting controls within the vehicle
  • Moving an object in the vehicle
  • Reaching for an object in the back seat
  • Eating or drinking
  • Smoking
  • Daydreaming/general inattention

People, objects and activities outside the vehicle can also result in driver distraction.

North Carolina Distracted Driving Laws

The law is considered a "primary" law, meaning that law enforcement officers can pull over drivers solely for texting while driving without needing any other traffic offense to have occurred.

All drivers, regardless of age or driving experience, are prohibited from texting while driving. This includes composing, reading, or sending text messages, email, or any other form of electronic communication.

For adult drivers (18 and over), there is no statewide ban on handheld phone use while driving, but it is discouraged. School bus drivers and drivers under the age of 18 are prohibited from using any mobile phone while driving, except in emergencies.

Violating the texting while driving ban can result in fines. Typically, the fine for texting while driving is $100 plus court costs. For drivers under 18 and school bus drivers, violations can also result in points on the driver’s license, which may affect insurance rates and driving privileges.

The laws do not apply to devices that are permanently installed in the vehicle. The use of GPS or navigation systems is allowed if the device is used for its intended purpose of navigation and not for communication.

Keep in mind that some local jurisdictions within North Carolina may have additional restrictions or rules regarding distracted driving, so it's important to be aware of and comply with local laws.

Filing a Car Accident Claim in North Carolina

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