The prevalence of smartphones and other mobile devices in the modern world unfortunately means a greater risk of distracted driving accidents, and that risk applies to commercial truck drivers as much as, if not more so than, the drivers of passenger vehicles. Drivers of semi-trucks require more time and distance to react to other vehicles or conditions on the road and slow down or come to a stop. A distraction from a text or phone call can cost valuable seconds. Furthermore, accidents involving trucks are often more severe due to the substantial size and weight of the vehicles. If you have been injured by a distracted truck driver, a personal injury lawsuit can help you obtain the financial relief you need for your damages and medical expenses.
Laws and Regulations for Truck Drivers and Cell Phones
Both the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the State of Wisconsin prohibit commercial truck drivers from handheld use of a cell phone while driving. This means that drivers may not hold a phone in their hands, but they are also prohibited from dialing a phone by pressing more than one button or reaching for the phone in a way that removes them from a normal seated position, except for in an emergency situation. Federal penalties for a violation can include the disqualification of a driver’s commercial license and fines of up to $2,750, with additional state fines of up to $40 for a first offense and up to $100 for a subsequent offense. This is not to mention financial consequences related to liability in a personal injury case.
Personal Injury Lawsuits Against Distracted Truck Drivers
If you have been injured in an accident with a distracted truck driver, the key to recovering full compensation is clearly demonstrating the driver’s negligence. You should hire an attorney as soon as possible so that we can help you obtain vital evidence to support your claim, which in these cases may include photographic evidence of your injuries and the scene of the accident, as well as police reports and sanctions against the driver that specifically mention inappropriate cell phone use.
It is important to note that phones and mobile devices are not the only possible distractions for a truck driver. While it may be harder to point to concrete evidence of a violation if there is no cell phone involved, we can still help you fully investigate the circumstances of your accident to uncover any signs that the driver took his or her attention away from the road.
Contact an Appleton, WI Truck Accident Attorney
With our extensive personal injury law experience, the attorneys at Herrling Clark Law Firm Ltd. have seen the harmful effects of distracted driving accidents, and we know the most successful approaches for obtaining compensation in accidents involving commercial truck drivers. Contact a Green Bay personal injury lawyer at 920-739-7366 to schedule a free consultation.