Each time we get behind the wheel, we place ourselves at risk of suffering serious injuries in an avoidable crash. Many of these accidents happen because a driver failed to pay attention to what was happening on the road. According to the Missouri Department of Transportation, 80 percent of all crashes are the result of some form of distracted driving. Tragically, in 2013, over 3,100 people in the U.S. lost their lives in these types of collisions. A Columbia, Missouri distracted driving accident attorney can play a pivotal role in helping a victim or a grieving family pursue the compensation that they deserve during this traumatic time. At the A.W. Smith Law Firm, our car accident lawyers have dedicated our legal practice to serving Missouri plaintiffs who suffer serious injuries or lose a loved one as the result of someone else’s recklessness or negligence driving.
The A.W. Smith Law Firm is a serious injury and wrongful death law firm. The sole focus of the A.W. Smith Law Firm is getting our clients the settlements they deserve, after they have suffered an injury or loss at the hands of a negligent driver. Our past results speak volumes about our talent and our passion, in helping each of our clients. We have been recognized nationally, for the success we have had on behalf of our clients.
Drivers can become distracted in a number of ways, including using their cell phones, adjusting the radio or stereo, adjusting the car’s temperature controls, talking to passengers, or texting while driving. If you have suffered devastating injuries because someone lost concentration behind the wheel, you can seek compensation by filing a personal injury lawsuit against the responsible motorist. You would need to establish that the defendant failed to take the same precautions that a reasonable, prudent driver would use to prevent exposing other people on the road to foreseeable risks of harm.
In nearly any situation, a reasonable driver would not violate traffic laws and regulations, or otherwise engage in distracted driving. In Missouri, motorists who are age 21 or younger are prohibited from texting while driving, yet many crashes occur because these “novice drivers” break this rule. Also, according to Missouri Statute Section 302.302.1, a driver can be cited for driving in a careless and imprudent manner. If the plaintiff can prove that the defendant violated a traffic law, a rebuttable presumption arises that the defendant violated the applicable standard of care.
After proving that the defendant was negligent, the plaintiff must show that this negligence was the direct cause of his or her injuries. The final step in a negligence claim consists of identifying reasonably quantifiable damages that the plaintiff incurred. These can account for both objective and relatively subjective forms of harm, including economic and non-economic costs and losses.
Unfortunately, distracted driving accidents may result in permanent, life-altering injuries. Victims may suffer severe burns, traumatic brain injuries, paralysis, lacerations, or spinal cord damage. As a result, plaintiffs in serious injury cases often may seek a wide range of damages, such as medical expenses, lost wages, the costs of future treatment, physical therapy costs, loss of future earning capacity, loss of quality of life, and pain and suffering.