Copyright © 2023 Charles E. Boyk Law Offices, LLC. All rights reserved. Reproduced with Permission.
In Bowling Green, using a cell phone while driving is against the law. If a person is caught talking on the phone, texting, or otherwise using a phone while driving, that could be considered a violation of the statute. Ohio law does allow hands-free devices and speakerphone.
If you were hurt in an accident because another driver was texting, you may be entitled to compensation. With the help of a Bowling Green texting while driving truck accident lawyer, you may be able to pursue a lawsuit against the responsible party. Call an experienced personal injury attorney today.
Under Bowling Green, Ohio laws, if the person is over 18, use of a cell phone while driving is considered a secondary offense. What that means is the police officer cannot stop the adult for using a cellphone; they would have to have probable cause, such as speeding, a lane violation, or running a red light. If the individual was using a cellphone, they could give a secondary violation, which could be up to $150 fine and a six months license suspension.
If the individual is under 18, then they can stop the individual as a primary offense. Once again, the penalties are a $150 fine and up to a six months license suspension.
The exact statistics of truck accidents caused by cell phone use is unknown, but attorneys commonly see cellphone and texting usage during these accidents. Phone records are part of the discovery process in every case that they file in court. They request both cellphone records and any other records of mobile devices in the vehicles, including videos. A person can get a log of all of the phone calls and information about cellphone usage, but not all of the information is going to help their case.
In a truck accident claim or suit involving a cellphone, lawyers would be asking in an interrogatory if the individual was on a cellphone and what the phone number was. They would file a subpoena with the cellphone company to order the actual records attached to that cellphone and then analyze those records. They would use that records to cross-examine the driver and owner of the cellphone both in the discovery deposition and a trial.
There does not have to be any consent for law enforcement and insurance companies to see the phone records of drivers involved in a truck accident. Typically, they can get a subpoena as long as they have a court case. If there is a criminal or civil court case pending, the prosecutor can subpoena those records.
The use of a cell phone by the plaintiff at the time of an accident can impact the injury claim of the plaintiff. If a plaintiff is using the cellphone, the court would argue contributory negligence. They would argue that the plaintiff was not using all of their attention and that lack of attention helped cause the accident. If the plaintiff is found more than 50% negligent, then they cannot make a claim under Ohio law.
The use of a cellphone by the defendant at the time of an accident can impact the injury claim on behalf of the client. The court would look at the totality of the circumstances. Based on that, the question would be that since the defendant did not have all of their attention on safely driving, what percentage of the total negligence caused the accident?
If both the injured party and the at-fault driver were found to be using their cell phones at the time of the accident, the court would look at liability equaling to 100%. Assuming that both parties were negligent, they would look at the totality of the circumstances and determine how liability should be split up.
If you were hurt in a truck wreck, you may worry about how to recover financially from your medical bills and missed time at work. Thankfully, compensation may be available if someone else was at fault for your injuries. Contact a Bowling Green texting while driving truck accident lawyer to discuss your case.