Driver in car with cellphone in hand

Distracted driving is one of the most common causes of traffic-related accidents in Clayton and across the United States. It’s an alarming problem that the popularity of the smartphone makes even worse. Distracted driving collisions kill thousands of Americans each year, and many more are injured. 

If you were injured in an accident caused by a distracted driver in Clayton, you could be entitled to financial compensation for related medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering, and more. We want to help you demand it. 

Proving that another motorist was distracted and directly caused the accident can be challenging, especially while you recover from your injuries. That’s why it’s crucial to consult with an experienced Missouri distracted driving attorney like ours at Sumner Law Group, LLC. 

We are ready to conduct a comprehensive investigation of the accident and aggressively pursue the compensation you deserve. Find out more by contacting us for a free consultation.

What Is Distracted Driving? 

Distracted driving occurs when an activity other than driving distracts a motorist. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have established three main categories of distracted driving: 

  • Visual – Visual distractions cause motorists to take their eyes off the road. 
  • Manual – Manual distractions cause motorists to take their hands off the wheel. 
  • Cognitive – Cognitive distractions cause motorists to take their attention off the task of driving. 

Things inside the vehicle often cause distracted driving, but factors outside a car can too. For instance, a motorist might take their eyes and mind off the road to read a billboard or look at a construction zone. 

It’s essential to know about the different types of distractions motorists frequently encounter so that you can avoid them. Doing so could help prevent a severe collision.  

Types of Driving Distractions

Some of the most common driving distractions include: 

  • Texting while driving
  • Making a call using a handheld cell phone
  • Using GPS devices or adjusting the radio
  • Playing games
  • Scrolling through music or videos on an electronic device 
  • Taking a photo or video
  • Eating and drinking while driving
  • Talking to children or passengers
  • Checking the weather or traffic reports
  • Personal grooming such as shaving or putting on makeup

Compensation for Victims of Distracted Driving Accidents in Clayton, MO

If you have been injured in an accident caused by a distracted driver in Clayton, you could be entitled to compensation. Compensation can cover an array of costs related to the accident, including: 

Economic Damages

  • Present and future medical expenses related to the accident, such as emergency care, surgeries, other medical treatments, and physical therapy
  • Lost income, if you’re unable to work due to your injuries
  • Property damage, such as the cost of repairing damage to your vehicle or replacing it

Non-economic Damages

  • Pain and suffering, including emotional trauma and mental anguish caused by the accident
  • Loss of enjoyment of life

Punitive Damages

  • Punitive damages are uncommon, but if a court finds that a distracted driver behaved in an excessively careless or reckless way, they could order the at-fault party to pay punitive damages as a form of punishment for their behavior. 

Injuries Caused by Distracted Driving Accidents

Distracted drivers have the potential to cause severe injuries. Pedestrians and cyclists, who lack the safety protections that vehicles offer, are even more likely to sustain catastrophic injuries in distracted driving accidents. 

Some of the most common injuries in these types of accidents include: 

  • Brain injuries
  • Spinal cord damage
  • Paralysis
  • Severe head and neck injuries
  • Broken bones
  • Amputations
  • Burn injuries
  • Nerve damage
  • Soft-tissue injuries
  • Organ damage
  • Chest injuries
  • Wrongful death

If you have lost a loved one because of a distracted driving accident, the wrongful death attorneys with Sumner Law Group, LLC, can help you seek compensation for related medical expenses, funeral costs, and other losses. We understand how difficult it can be to move on after a preventable death, which is why we help families seek just compensation and accountability for those that cause distracted driving car accidents. 

Time Limits for Filing a Clayton Distracted Driving Accident Lawsuit

Missouri’s statute of limitations for personal injury allows you up to five years to bring a personal injury lawsuit against a distracted driver. While that might seem like plenty of time, it’s always best to begin your claim well before the deadline. Contacting an attorney as soon as possible can prevent the loss of critical evidence and help you pursue the compensation you deserve. 

Clayton Negligence Laws and Distracted Driving

Although the state does not ban texting and driving for adults over 21, all drivers age 21 and younger are legally prohibited from reading, writing, and sending text messages while driving under Missouri state law. Commercial drivers are also prohibited from texting while driving under this law, regardless of age. 

Even though Missouri’s distracted driving and cell phone use laws are more lenient than some other states, distracted drivers still face severe penalties if they cause an accident. They could be cited for reckless driving and bear financial responsibility for injuries they cause.

Statistics on Accidents and Injuries Caused by Distracted Driving

Distracted driving continues to cause thousands of fatal accidents across the country each year. According to recent information from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 3,142 traffic fatalities resulted from distracted driving accidents in one recent year. Those deaths made up almost 9 percent of fatal accidents in the country. 

CDC data further emphasizes the severity of this issue. According to their research, about eight people are killed every single day by distracted driving crashes. In just one recent year, distraction-related accidents killed over 2,800 individuals, and an estimated 400,000 individuals were injured. About 1 in 5 of the fatalities were pedestrians, cyclists, or were otherwise outside a motor vehicle at the time of the crash. 

Contact a Clayton Distracted Driving Accident Lawyer

If you have been injured or lost a loved one due to a distracted driver’s negligence in Clayton, don’t wait to contact our skilled distracted driving car accident lawyers at Sumner Law Group, LLC. 

We are ready to gather vital evidence to help support your case and negotiate with the insurer and their lawyers on your behalf for a fair and full settlement. If they won’t agree to what you deserve, we’re prepared to fight for you in court. 

Missouri distracted driving accident lawyers with Sumner Law Group, LLC, have the knowledge and resources to build the strongest possible case for our clients. Contact us today for a free consultation.