Can I Recover Compensation From A Driver Who Hit Me While Smoking?
According to the CDC, the prevalence of cigarette smoking has declined over the years. However, smoking is still a popular activity among many people, including drivers.
You were safely driving around or maybe even walking when another driver hit you and caused you to suffer injuries. You then realized that the driver had been smoking. Now you are asking yourself if you can file a claim against the other driver and recover compensation.
So, can you recover compensation from a driver who hit you while smoking? Although smoking while driving is not always dangerous, it can sometimes lead to distracted driving. Therefore, you may be eligible to file a claim against the other driver if their smoking caused them to be distracted. Distracted driving is a type of negligent driving behavior.
Is Smoking While Driving Illegal in Florida?
Smoking while driving is not illegal in Florida. A driver cannot be pulled over, fined, or jailed, simply for smoking while driving. However, a driver can be pulled over if smoking causes them to drive carelessly or recklessly.
However, just because smoking when driving is not illegal does not mean it is safe for a driver to engage in such behavior. As already mentioned, smoking while driving can lead to distracted driving. So, it is best to avoid this type of behavior.
There are several distractions that can be caused by smoking and driving. These are;
- Visual distraction
- Cognitive distraction
- Manual distraction
Visual distraction can, for example, occur when a driver has to take their eyes off the road to search for their cigarettes. Cognitive distraction can, for example, arise when a driver’s brain is focused on locating a cigarette and lighting it. Finally, manual distraction can occur, for instance, when a driver removes one or both their hands from the steering wheel in order to light their cigarette.
Evaluation of the Risk of Smoking While Driving
According to research, cigarette smoking can distract one while driving, sometimes even more than mobile phone use. One particular study published by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) found that smoking distracts the driver for an average of 12 seconds. On the other hand, the average of the measured driving distraction of mobile phone users was 10.6 seconds.
What Should I Do if I Was Hit by Someone Who Was Smoking While Driving?
If you were hit by someone who was smoking while driving and believe their smoking caused them to be distracted, you might be eligible for compensation. So, it is crucial that you reach out to a qualified attorney as soon as possible. A skilled attorney can help you gather sufficient evidence that can help you recover the compensation you deserve for your injuries and damages.
Some of the damages you might be entitled to include medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Contact a Parkland Personal Injury Attorney
If you were injured by a smoking driver, contact an experienced Parkland personal injury attorney at Lyons & Snyder. We can assess your case and advise you on how best to proceed. We can help you hold the at-fault party liable and recover the compensation you deserve.