Driving in Houston is challenging under the very best of circumstances. While many think quickly looking away to check a text is harmless, it dramatically increases the risk of an accident. In fact, texting and driving may be more dangerous than drunk driving.

When you are injured due to a texting trucker’s negligence, you may be entitled to substantial compensation. You may also be able to recover from a driver’s employer, especially if their company policies require truckers to text and drive. To find out about potential remedies, you should consult a lawyer who handles texting and driving truck accidents in Houston. Call today to speak with one of our dedicated truck accident attorneys.

Texting While Driving Laws

Texas Transportation Code § 545.4251 prohibits people from texting while driving and using any type of wireless communication device to send or receive electronic messages while operating a moving vehicle.

The law does contain some exceptions, such as calling for help if someone sees an accident or needs emergency help. However, even if the behavior contributing to the accident is not a criminal offense, it is still considered distracted driving.

Distracted driving includes any behavior that pulls the driver’s focus away from the road. There are three general types of distractions: visual, manual, and cognitive. Looking away from the road is a visual distraction. Taking your hands off of the wheel is a manual distraction. Thinking about other things is a cognitive distraction. Truthfully, every driver is guilty of distracted driving at some point in time.

Texting combines all three types. The driver looks away from the road to watch a screen. They use at least one hand to handle the phone, type, or scroll. Plus, they are thinking about the text instead of what is on the road. Every kind of distraction increases the reaction time, which is why texting while trucking is so dangerous and puts people in Houston at risk for truck collisions.

Fault in Texting and Driving Wrecks

Since texting while driving is illegal, it may seem like a trucker who was texting at the time of the accident would always be liable. However, that is not always true. Someone can be negligent and still not be fully responsible for the accident. Other parties can share responsibility. The degree of fault is critical because it affects not only a person’s ability to recover but also the amount of potential recovery.

Texas Civil Practice & Remedies Code § 33.001 is the proportionate responsibility statute, which introduces the state’s modified comparative negligence approach. Even if someone shares fault for an accident, they may be able to recover from other wrongdoers. The critical issue is whether someone had 51 percent or more of the responsibility for the accident. If so, they cannot recover. If not, they can recover.

In addition, the percentage of fault can impact the recovery rate. The court will reduce a damage award to reflect the plaintiff’s share of the blame, which is why it is known as proportionate responsibility. Understanding these concepts can help people understand settlement valuations in Houston texting and driving truck crashes.

Call an Attorney About Houston Texting and Driving Truck Wrecks

Texting while driving is always dangerous, which is the main reason it is illegal. Doing so in a busy city only increases the danger. No wonder texting while driving is a leading cause of truck accidents.

Handling these claims on your own can be challenging. Even if you think the blame is clear, knowing who is to blame is different from proving it. One of our lawyers could help you by getting the evidence to back up your claim, which puts you in a more advantageous settlement position and gives you an edge at trial. To find out more about texting and driving truck accidents in Houston, schedule a consultation.