Distracted Truck Driver Accident Lawyers
If you or a loved one has been harmed in an accident involving a distracted truck driver, call the distracted truck driver accident lawyers from Belt, Bruner, & Barnett P.C. today at 205-933-1500 or use our online form. We have experience investigating truck crash cases in Birmingham, Montgomery, Mobile, Huntsville or elsewhere in Alabama, and across the Southeast.
Cell phones and personal electronic devices are dangerous distractions in the hands of someone who is driving a large commercial truck, such as an 18-wheeler. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) prohibits truck drivers from texting while driving and allows truckers to use only hands-free cell phones that are mounted close to the properly seated driver.
Using a hand-held device while driving is a serious traffic violation that could result in a disqualification of a commercial truck driver, the FMCSA warns. When distracted truck drivers cause accidents that hurt others, they and, in many cases, the trucking firm that employs the driver may be liable for the injured party’s losses.
We can provide you with a free consultation and discuss your legal rights and options. Our truck accident lawyers can help you.
Distracted Driving Truckers May Be Violating the Law
Commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers include interstate truck and bus drivers and drivers who transport hazardous materials. The FMCSA prohibits them from texting or using hand-held mobile phones while operating their vehicles.
“Texting,” according to the FMCSA, means manually entering text into or reading text from an electronic device. “This includes, but is not limited to, short message service, e-mailing, instant messaging, a command or request to access a Web page, or pressing more than a single button to initiate or terminate a voice communication using a mobile phone,” the agency says.
CMV drivers are also prohibited from “reaching for or holding a mobile phone to conduct a voice communication, as well as dialing by pressing more than a single button.” Truck drivers who use a mobile phone while driving may operate only a hands-free phone that can be operated by the driver while restrained by properly adjusted safety belts.
Motor carriers – or trucking companies – also are barred from requiring or allowing their drivers to text or use a hand-held mobile phone while driving.
Drivers who violate the rules may face civil penalties up to $2,750 and disqualification as CMV operators after multiple offenses. Motor carriers may be subject to civil penalties up to $11,000.
But distracted driving includes more than using a cellphone. The NHTSA defines distracted driving as also:
- Using ‘in-built’ entertainment systems (such as radios and CD and DVD players)
- Talking with passengers.
The dangers are obvious. The FMCSA, still addressing cell phone use, says that texting drivers take their eyes off the road for an average of 4.6 seconds. At 55 mph, this equates to a driver’s traveling the approximate length of a football field without looking at the roadway.
But anything that draws a driver’s attention from the task of safely handling a large commercial truck for even a few seconds is a hazard.
When a truck driver causes such a hazard, and you or a family member suffers serious injury or death because of that choice, it’s our role as your attorneys to aggressively protect your right to be compensated for your losses. We’ll work hard to hold the at-fault truck driver accountable.
Contact Our Lawyers Today
If you have been hurt or lost a loved one in an accident caused by a truck driver engaged in distracted driving, an experienced truck accident lawyer from Belt & Bruner can help you determine your legal rights and options. Our founding member, Keith T. Belt Jr., is a Top 100 Trial Lawyer as determined by the American Trial Lawyers Association and has also been named an Alabama Super Lawyer. Our Alabama injury lawyers have more than 65 years of combined trial experience in state and federal courts.
We know how to handle insurance companies, and we are aggressive in courtrooms. Our record of success includes winning a $13 million verdict on behalf of a distracted driving crash victim and obtaining many other multimillion-dollar verdicts and settlements. We work hard for our clients.
If you or a loved one were injured in a devastating accident caused by a distracting truck driver, call the distracted driving lawyers from Belt, Bruner, & Barnett P.C. at 205-933-1500 or use our online form. We offer a case evaluation free of charge and are ready to help you obtain full compensation for your losses. With offices in Birmingham, Mobile, Huntsville, and Montgomery, our attorneys will quickly travel to investigate your case.