Phones are a popular distraction, and they’re one of the leading distractions that cause accidents today. Motorists throughout Georgia are refusing to put down their phones or leave their consoles alone. Even with hands-free systems in place, a cell phone is still a distraction. A car accident lawyer in Atlanta can explain how the illegal use of a cell phone caused your crash.
The Hands-Free Georgia Act
The Georgia Department of Driver Services put the Hands-Free Georgia Act into effect as of July 1, 2018. The act outlines clear fines for touching your smartphone or hand-held device for any reasons. A wireless communication device as well as stand-alone electronic devices such as third-party GPS guidance both qualify towards offenses.
The Hands-Free Act lays out that all drivers may not hold or support with any part of their body an electronic device. They may also not read, send, or write any text-based communication. Those communications include email, twitter, text messaging, and other forms of social media posting and instant messaging.
Additionally, this act prohibits the watching, recording, and broadcasting of any video or movie. Your beloved devices will have effectively no purpose in the vehicle. However, the fines are not substantial enough to deter drivers.
The first conviction is a $50 fine while the second is a $100 and finally for all other offenses a $150 fine. Each find comes with an additional point on your license, which may impact other areas of your life negatively.
Distractions Through Bluetooth Connection
In addition to the hands-free act, there is still the issue of distractions behind the wheel. Georgia law has many areas which touch on distractions, and while Bluetooth devices aren’t specifically mentioned, they aren’t exempt. Bluetooth devices can be as distracting as a chatty passenger, changing the radio, or even eating while driving.
It’s imperative that you carefully understand how distracted drivers can wreak havoc for everyone else on the road. If someone who was distracted caused your crash, you probably have extensive injuries. Distracted drivers often miss the window of opportunity to react and lessen the impact meaning that everyone involved goes through the full extent of force from the crash.
Many people rely on Bluetooth connectivity to get away with things that they can’t do with their hands. However, using Bluetooth to craft a message via voice or initiate a phone call is still an issue that leads to auto accidents.
An Atlanta Car Accident Lawyer Will Be Your Guide
As using your phone when driving in Georgia is illegal, this could become a critical part of your case. However, it is not easy to prove that someone was using their phone at the time of the crash. If you go through the standard process of informing your car insurance company, they won’t take these claims seriously.
Unless you proactively work to show that they were on the phone, then your claim will likely proceed as normal. You may have to actively work against the insurance companies involved to deter any fault that they may try to attribute to you.
However, even if you hit someone from behind their use of their phone and negligence needs to be taken into consideration. Working with a lawyer in Atlanta can help you understand how specific Georgia laws might impact the determination of fault in your case. Don’t waste time letting insurance companies try to sort it out.
Instead, inform the police when making your report that you suspect the other driver of texting behind the wheel. Then seek the help of an attorney. Your Atlanta car accident lawyer will open a lawsuit and formally request the phone records of the other driver to show that they were using their phone when driving.
Contact an Atlanta Car Accident Lawyer Today
After a car wreck, you’re likely in need of proper legal guidance. Insurance companies and police officers will often only give you the bare minimum of information that you need. Another driver being on the phone or distracted while driving can cause substantial damage.
Georgia state law actively prohibits the use of any hand-held device when driving. That hasn’t stopped many drivers from using their phones and causing wrecks anyway.
Get the representation you need, and call our personal injury law firm in Georgia. When you need representation, The Weinstein Firm can help you build a strong case, clearly expose when other drivers are negligent, and explore opportunities for compensation. Work with a knowledgeable and skillful Atlanta car accident attorney now.