When determining fault after a car crash, it’s normal to look at a number of factors. The current conditions on the road, the behavior of both drivers prior to the crash and even the condition of the vehicles can all influence who ultimately has fault or responsibility for the crash and the losses it produced.
Under Connecticut law, people have the right to bring personal injury claims against those who cause financial losses or physical injury due to their own misconduct or negligence, including distracted driving. Misconduct generally involves an action that is illegal or inherently unethical. Most people readily recognize that texting at the wheel is dangerous, but is it actually illegal in Connecticut?
Connecticut bans most mobile communication at the wheel
Mobile phones are one of the leading causes of distraction among drivers. Prohibiting certain kinds of mobile phone use is one way for state lawmakers to help make the Connecticut roads a little bit safer for everyone.
It is illegal for anyone to manually text or enter data while driving a vehicle in Connecticut. However, adults have the option of using hands-free systems that allow them to answer the phone through their vehicles’ sound systems or hands-free headsets, hear a read text message or email, or dictate a message to someone. For teenage drivers age 16 and 17, even hands-free solutions violate state law.
Be sure to voice your concerns about distraction right after the crash
While you may not want to seem like you’re pointing fingers, the truth is that you need the accident report to reflect accurately who contributed to the crash if you have to take action against the other driver.
Make sure that you let law enforcement officers know at the scene of the crash, if possible, that you suspected distraction on the part of the other driver. That way, the police can obtain mobile phone records, check the device itself and even check security and traffic cameras for evidence of distraction.
If law enforcement officers don’t take those necessary steps, you may need to take action on your own, possibly with the help of an attorney, to collect evidence that could prove a distraction and help bolster a personal injury claim against the other driver.