Causes and Liability in Distract Driving Trucking Accidents
Most everyone knows that operating a motor vehicle while distracted is very dangerous and reckless, regardless of what type of vehicle you may be driving. When a person driving a semi tractor trailer or other type of truck chooses to operate their truck while engaging in activities that distract them, it is even more incredibly dangerous. This is because the size of their vehicle and the load they are carrying can cause a great harm to other drivers on the road or pedestrians if they are hit by a distracted truck driver. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were approximately 2,841 deaths in 2018 (the last year of analyzed statistics) from distracted driving alone. This includes distracted driving trucking accidents in New Mexico that can harm others.
Our New Mexico distracted driving truck accident attorneys at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. understand just how serious, dangerous, and preventable these accidents can be. In fact, distracted driving is one of the most preventable causes of any motor vehicle wreck, especially for 18 wheelers. However, far too many motorists and truckers continue to cause these serious types of crashes due to preventable and avoidable negligence. Examples of distracted driving includes the following:
- Eating or drinking
- Texting while driving
- Reaching for objects on the floor of the vehicle
- Reading a book or using a map
- Reading things along the road such a bulletin boards
- Using a dispatch radio system
- Playing with the music radio
- Using a cell phone
- Talking to a passenger or playing with a pet along for the ride, and
- Many other serious and generally unlawful actions.
Liability for Distracted Driving
As stated above, while most people know the seriousness of operating a vehicle while participating in a distracting activity is dangerous, many individuals still choose to do so. Unfortunately, included in this group of distracted drivers are truck drivers, which can have deadly consequences for the other drivers on the road, including the truck driver.
According to New Mexico statutory law, the act of texting while driving has been made unlawful. As this is illegal, consequences of texting while driving can result in total automatic liability agains the defendant (the person who caused the crash) if they operating a vehicle and texting. But while some truck drivers are not from New Mexico and may claim they do not know the law—which is NOT a defense to a big rig crash—there are federal regulations promulgated by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) which prohibit the use of wireless devices. This means that in the event of a crash, a person choosing to text or read texts while operating a vehicle is in direct violation of the regulation.
In addition to the federal regulations, the New Mexico statutes still apply. This includes NM Stat. section 66-8-114 which provides that states “[a]ny person operating a vehicle on the highway shall give his full time and entire attention to the operation of the vehicle.” When an individual chooses to take a job with the primary role of driving a truck, it is their obligation and duty of these drivers to adhere to these regulations each time they get in their semi-tractor trailer or other truck. Choosing to participate in distracted driving while operating the vehicle is illegal and is in direct violation of this statute. This is why any truck driver that causes an accident while choosing to partake in distracted driving will be liable under New Mexico law.
Get Help from Our Distracted Driving Trucking Accident Lawyers
Here at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C., we understand how important it is for victims of serious trucking accidents to get the help and support that they deserve. Our experienced team knows how to prove damages cases and establish liability against a negligent truck driver or trucking company. Victims who are seriously injured should obtain the compensation that they deserve, and our Albuquerque trucking accident lawyers know how to do that for them. Call for a FREE consultation by dialing (505) 883-5000 to learn what your right to compensation may be under the law.
We handle causes throughout New Mexico, including Las Cruces, Santa Fe, Roswell, Cuervo, Rio Rancho, Clovis, Farmington, Hobbs, Albuquerque where our office is located, and anywhere else throughout New Mexico. Please call to schedule for FREE appointment by dialing (505) 883-5000 or contact us through our website’s easy to use and convenient contact box available here.