UNDERSTANDING TENNESSEE'S DISTRACTED DRIVING LAWS
In 2013, distracted driving claimed the lives of 3,154 people, according to Distraction.gov. At Cantrell, Goodge & Associates, we know how devastating car accidents of any kind can be, especially those that involve negligence such as using a cellphone while driving. Anyone on the road in Tennessee should know the laws that govern distracted driving and what to do following an accident.
According to Distraction.gov, Tennessee has the following distracted driving laws in place:
- No driver is permitted to text behind the wheel.
- Bus drivers cannot use handheld or hands-free devices.
- Novice drivers, or those with either a learner’s permit or intermediate license, may not use handheld or hands-free devices.
Each of these laws is enforced on a primary basis. That means that a law enforcement officer can pull over your vehicle and ticket you solely based on witnessing you engaging in one of these activities. At best, the penalty for violating these laws includes a fine. In the event that the behavior leads to an accident, however, the consequences could be much worse.
If you are involved in a car crash with someone whom you suspect has been using a phone while driving, you should seek any emergency medical assistance necessary and contact local law enforcement. Filing a police report will give you an official document to use in court or in an insurance claim. You can also get in touch with an attorney, who can help you file a lawsuit to collect damages that exceed what the at-fault party’s insurance company is willing to pay.
For more information, please visit our page regarding what to do following a crash involving texting while driving.