Car Accidents: Distracted Driving in South Carolina
December 29, 2012 /24-7PressRelease/ -- When certain activities are coupled with the responsibility of driving, the result can be tragic. Distracted driving continues to infect the United States. Text messaging, talking on a cellphone, eating food and many other actions are all secondary activities that can make driving dangerous. These activities shift the motorist's focus from the roadway to a task, which impairs the ability of a driver.

Research shows that some of these distractions cause larger impairment than drunk driving; however, according to the Strategic Highway Safety Plan's website, over 7 million people believe that their focus is unaffected by these behaviors.

The problem appears to be rampant with teens. For example, reports that distracted driving is the number one cause of death among teens in the United States.

Despite the risks, people of all ages continue to engage in dangerous driving practices. A National Mutual Insurance Survey reports that more than 80 percent of motorists admit to hazardous behavior, including steering with a foot, changing clothes, painting nails and shaving.

Over the past few years, nearly every legislature in the country has considered or passed laws, which help address this problem.

Unfortunately, South Carolina has no explicit prohibitions. It is one of the few remaining states with no blanket protections against distracted driving activities. Legislative attempts have been made to prohibit texting while driving; however, nothing is in place at the moment.

Fortunately, for those that have been involved in an accident caused by a distracted driver, South Carolina law has a Distracted/Inattention attribute under their Contributing Factors statute. According to this statute, any circumstance contributing to a car accident can be used to determine fault in the crash. Contributing factors can be may be the weather, speed, road conditions, cellphone use or driving under the influence.

Therefore, if a motorist's practice of distracted driving (for example, texting and driving) leads to a serious car accident, such practice could be assessed as a cause, attributing liability to a negligent motorist.

If a car accident occurs, police and insurance companies will investigate the accident in an effort to determine contributing factors. It is important to note that participants of the investigation may not agree on the contributing factors of a crash.

Therefore, if you have been injured in a car accident that was caused by a distracted driver, you deserve to be compensated for your harm. An experienced personal injury attorney can help you determine contributing factors and assess your case.

Article provided by Alan M. Tanenbaum, P.A.
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