Hartford Distracted Driver Accident Attorney
There are many reasons why drivers in Hartford, Connecticut, become distracted behind the wheel. And all it takes is a split second of lost concentration for a negligent driver to crash into you. For example, maybe you get broadsided on Wethersfield Avenue when you’re leaving Alfred E. Burr Middle School. The culprit? A driver so busy texting they’re not watching the road. Or maybe you’re visiting the Connecticut Convention Center and you’re rear-ended on Columbus Blvd. by a driver scrambling to find their phone. In all cases, you could be left with serious – if not life-changing – injuries.
That’s where our Hartford distracted driver accident lawyers can help. At Hassett & George, we can explain your legal rights and help you get the compensation you deserve. You don’t need to deal with the consequences of a distracted driver crash alone. Instead, contact Hassett & George for a free case evaluation.
Is Distracted Driving Causing Many Accidents in Hartford, Connecticut?
Yes. This is unsurprising when we consider what distracted driving actually is.
Put simply, distracted driving is any activity that takes a driver’s attention away from driving the vehicle. Distractions can be manual, visual, or cognitive:
- Visual: The driver stops looking at the road, e.g., they look around to get something to eat or discipline a child.
- Manual: The driver takes their hands off the steering wheel to do something unrelated to driving, e.g., text or answer a phone.
- Cognitive: The driver isn’t focusing because they become preoccupied with something else.
But just how many accidents do distracted drivers cause? As distracted driver accident attorneys in Hartford, Connecticut, we can tell you there are a lot. This is backed by data compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration:
- Distracted driving caused nearly 5,200 crashes in CT in 2022.
- In the same year, 8% of fatal crashes involved a distracted driver.
The problem is so serious that CT launched a statewide campaign, U Drive. U Text. U Pay. The campaign sought to remind drivers how to drive safely:
- Pull over to a safe spot if you must use your phone.
- Never stream movies or videos when driving, even if you’re using hands-free.
- Use the “silent” or “do not disturb” feature on your phone if you can’t ignore social media or text notifications when you see them appear.
- Ask a passenger to answer your phone for you when driving if you can’t safely pull over.
Our Hartford distracted driver lawyers know how serious accidents can be. Unfortunately, we also know how common these types of crashes are, too. If you lose a loved one due to distracted driving, you need urgent legal advice. The legal team at Hassett & George, P.C., can help with a Hartford wrongful death claim on your loved one’s behalf. Contact us now to discuss your claim.
Teen Distracted Driver Incidents
Teens have little driving experience. It’s unsurprising, then, that they cause a significant number of distracted driving crashes in Hartford, CT. As distracted driver accident attorneys in Hartford, we can tell you that they’re also at a very high risk of being involved in fatal collisions, as this data shows:
- In 2021, 8% of teens involved in distracted driving fatalities were aged between 15 and 19.
- 7% of teens involved in fatal crashes in CT in 2021 were distracted while driving.
- 6% of distracted driving fatalities were teens aged between 15 and 19.
It’s critical that we educate our teens on safe and responsible driving practices. But if you’re unfortunate enough to be involved in a distracted driving incident involving a teen, the distracted driver accident lawyers in Hartford at Hassett & George can help.
Distracted Driving Is Increasingly Common in Hartford, Connecticut
We’ve already explained what distracted driving is and how it’s becoming commonplace. But why is it so common? We can identify various reasons, but cellphones are to blame for many accidents. Let’s consider the main causes of distracted driving in CT:
- Electronic Devices: Too often, drivers answer calls, respond to texts, or even scroll through social media while driving. They may also stream movies, film themselves, or give such devices to their children.
- Pets: Drivers frequently have pets in their car. If the pets are jumping around or barking, they will distract the driver’s attention from the road.
- Other Passengers: Talking to passengers can cause a driver’s attention to wander, especially if they’re discussing something important or they argue.
- Technology: In-vehicle tech, such as GPS and stereo controls, can be distracting if the driver uses them too frequently.
- Food and Drink: Drivers often carry food and drink with them. If they’re busy eating or sipping coffee, they may take their eyes off the road. They’re also not in control of the vehicle if they don’t have their hands on the wheel.
Children Can Contribute to Distracted Driver Accidents in Hartford
As Hartford distracted driver accident lawyers, we know that children can also contribute to distracted driver incidents. Ways that children can distract drivers include:
- Spilling food and drink
- General misbehaving
It’s tempting for parents to turn around to discipline or pacify children. Or, they may look in their rearview mirror rather than watching the roadway in front. They may also start rummaging around for toys or other items to distract bored children with.
As Hartford distracted driver attorneys, we know how challenging it can be to drive with kids in the car. However, parents can reduce the risk of incidents by pulling over to deal with a child acting out. And if pulling over is not possible, they should remain calm and focused on the roadway until there’s a safe place to stop and handle the matter.
If your child is old enough, talk to them and explain why acting out in the car is so dangerous. Older children behaving calmly in the car can also set a positive influence on younger siblings.
Is There a Way to Prove That Someone Was Texting and Driving?
Ultimately, your Hartford car accident case will only succeed if you or your distracted driver accident attorney in Hartford, Connecticut, can prove four elements of personal injury claims:
- Duty of Care: This is a legal responsibility to act in a way that respects the safety of others. Drivers owe each other a duty of care.
- Negligence: You must show that the other driver acted negligently, i.e., they breached this duty of care. An example of negligence is, of course, distracted driving.
- Injury: Then, you must show that you were injured during the accident. This typically involves showing medical records and, where possible, a police accident report.
- Causation: Finally, you must demonstrate that the other driver’s negligence caused your injuries and losses.
How do we prove, then, that someone was texting and driving? It all comes down to the evidence available. The more evidence you have to prove distracted driving, the better. The type of evidence you may rely upon includes:
- Accident Report: The police accident report may confirm if the other driver was texting and driving.
- Eyewitnesses: Eyewitnesses can testify that they saw the other driver using a phone or driving distracted.
- Phone Records: Cellphone records may show if the driver made calls or texts while driving. You may also be able to detect if they posted on social media.
- Expert Evidence: A crash scene expert may be able to determine, from the evidence, whether a distracted driver caused the crash.
Other helpful evidence includes photos or videos of the driver texting, dashcam footage, or even CCTV footage. In some cases, the other driver might even admit to texting and driving! This is rare, though, so you typically need more evidence to support your claim. Our Hartford distracted driver accident attorneys can explain what evidence you need.
Are There Laws or Restrictions for Distracted Driving in Hartford, CT?
Yes. For example, in CT, you are prohibited from using a mobile or other hand-held electronic device when operating a motor vehicle. And if you’re 16 or 17, you can’t use a hands-free device either. This reflects your relative inexperience behind the wheel – you must pay full attention to the road at all times.
There are limited exceptions for medical emergencies and certain personnel. However, the general rule is that you should avoid using any cellphones or similar electronic devices as a driver in CT. You can learn more about CT’s commitment to preventing distracted driving here. Our Hartford distracted driver accident attorneys can also help with any questions you might have.
What If I Was Partly to Blame for the Accident?
It’s not uncommon for more than one party to be at least partly responsible for a car crash. After all, road accidents are complicated, and there may be multiple vehicles involved. Does this mean you can’t claim compensation? No. Under CT’s “comparative negligence” rules, you may still be able to recover damages if you’re partly to blame.
You can still claim damages if you are less than 50% responsible. In other words, the other driver must still be “mostly” to blame. You can’t claim damages if the accident was mostly your fault. However, your damages will be reduced by your percentage of fault.
For example, if you’re found to be 10% responsible, you’ll lose 10% of your total damages. And if you’re 40% to blame, you’ll lose 40% of your total award, and so on.
How do you determine your degree of fault? This is where it gets complicated. Our distracted driver accident lawyers in Hartford can evaluate the evidence and determine:
- whether you’re likely to be found partially to blame; and
- how this will affect your award.
Contact us to learn more.
How Hassett & George Can Help After a Distracted Driver Accident in Hartford, CT
When you call Hassett & George, you’re calling attorneys who truly care about getting you the justice you deserve. We understand how overwhelming this process can seem, especially if you’re recovering from moderate to serious injuries. That’s why your team will do everything possible to provide reassurance and guidance from the moment you reach out to us.
If you hire our distracted driver accident attorneys in Hartford, here’s what you can expect from us.
- We will listen carefully and evaluate all aspects of your case.
- Our attorneys will assess the evidence and determine if you have a claim and, broadly, how much it could be worth.
- We will explain your legal rights, including who to sue and how long the claims process may take.
- While you recover and focus on moving forward, we will negotiate with the at-fault party’s lawyers and insurers on your behalf.
- We will evaluate any settlement offer to determine if it’s fair. And if required, we’ll take your case to court to get you the damages you deserve.
No attorney can guarantee a result. However, we can assure you that as our client, you will be treated with compassion and respect. We treat every client as an individual – and we work tirelessly to uphold their rights.
Have you recently suffered a car crash in Hartford, CT? You may find the following resources helpful.
- Roggi’s Auto Service: As one of the longest-standing repair shops in Hartford, Roggi’s Auto Service has provided auto repair services for generations. This family-owned shop can help if you have car repair needs after your accident.
- Sher’s Automotive Center: Sher’s Automotive Center has been providing quality, dependable repairs for over 65 years. Give this family-owned repair shop a call if you need car servicing after a crash.
- Jim’s Auto Repair: Trusted with locals for over 40 years, Jim’s Auto Repair, a family-owned business, offers a range of services for accident-damaged vehicles.
Our distracted driver accident attorneys in Hartford can provide further resources that may be helpful if we take on your case.
Experienced Hartford Law Firm
If you’re in a crash and it wasn’t your fault, you need knowledgeable attorneys on your side. And at Hassett & George, we’re ready and waiting to stand with you. As experienced Hartford personal injury attorneys, we understand what you’re going through. We want to help you get the maximum damages you’re entitled to – and our team can answer any questions you have about the process.
All initial consultations are free. If we determine that you have a case, our distracted driver accident attorneys in Hartford will explain the next steps. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain from reaching out for help. Call now to arrange a free case evaluation with Hartford distracted driver accident attorneys.
In addition to Hartford, Hassett & George also serves: Simsbury, Glastonbury, Rocky Hill, Wethersfield, New Britain, Southington, Bridgeport, Waterbury, Newington, Danbury, Norwalk, Manchester, South Windsor, Windsor, Farmington, Windsor Locks, Avon, Bloomfield, Bristol, Enfield, Plainville and more.