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Albuquerque Distracted Driving Accident Attorneys

Tenacious Representation for Accident Victims & Their Families

There’s a reason why distracted driving is illegal and dangerous. Taking your attention away from the road, even for less than a second, can lead to substantial injuries and damages. It can also have a devastating impact on you or others.

“Truth never damages a cause that is just.” -Mahatma Gandhi

Despite the level of seriousness, many drivers still operate their vehicles surrounded by distractions. Martinez, Hart, Sanchez & Romero encourages motorists throughout New Mexico to remain alert and aware when behind the wheel. In the event you cross paths with a distracted driver and experience property damage or injuries, we also offer dependable legal support to help you navigate your personal injury case.

Schedule your free initial consultation by calling us at (505) 806-1780. Our Albuquerque distracted driving accident lawyers are here to help when you need it the most.

What Is Distracted Driving?

There are actually three different types of distracted driving behaviors, as explained here:

  • Cognitive: Driving involves making a lot of decisions quickly. This requires a higher level of cognition, which can be impacted by daydreaming or conversing with others in the vehicle.
  • Manual: A manual distraction is one that requires you to take your hands off the wheel. Texting or using a mobile device is a common type of manual distraction but eating behind the wheel or changing radio stations also counts.
  • Visual: Visual distractions cause you to take your eyes off the road. Again, using a mobile device while driving is the most common cause of visual distraction, but even looking at a passenger can be dangerous while the vehicle is in motion.

Distracted Driving Laws in New Mexico

As of 2019, New Mexico had the unwanted distinction of being the state with the highest number of distracted driving fatalities. For every million residents in the state, 61.6 deaths occur in accidents involving distracted driving. Distracted driving is a major issue these days. While most people understand the threat distractions pose to themselves and other motorists, it doesn’t stop them from texting while driving or partaking in other dangerous behaviors.

Our team at Martinez, Hart, Sanchez & Romero has seen just how damaging distracted can be when it comes to accidents and injuries. We are ready to help investigate the root cause of why the at-fault driver was distracted and help you prove your case.  

Texting & Driving

While there are numerous driving distractions to watch out for, texting and driving is among the most serious. In 2018, distracted driving incidents were cited in 2,841 auto fatalities, which includes drivers, passengers, and pedestrians. With texting and driving comes debilitating injuries, lost income, and the lingering emotional effects of a traumatic accident. Many of these people are left with increasing medical bills, lost wages, and a sense of injustice about the accident that occurred. In this case, we’re here to help.

Our team at Martinez, Hart, Sanchez & Romero can help you navigate the aftermath of an auto accident with compassionate legal assistance. We are ready to listen and advocate on your behalf to pursue justice for what occurred. 

Why Texting While Driving Is So Dangerous

Taking your eyes away from the road for a few seconds might not seem like a potential hazard. However, consider that a person going 55 mph who takes their eyes off the road for a mere 5 seconds will travel the length of an entire football field in that time. A stopped vehicle, an animal, or a concealed pedestrian can easily appear within those five seconds, and if you’re not paying attention a collision is likely.

There is another reason why texting and driving should be avoided at all costs. There are three different types of distracted driving, which are visual, manual, and cognitive. Texting while driving incorporates all three types into one activity. When you’re composing a text, your mind is on the message and not the road. You’re also removing your hands (manual) from the wheel and your eyes (visual) from the road.

Texting While Driving vs. Talking on a Mobile Phone

Texting, emailing, instant messaging, and other ways of conveying messages electronically from a handheld device are all prohibited while driving in New Mexico. Even sending a message while stopped at a stop sign is not permitted. If caught texting while driving, a motorist could be subject to a fine or a charge of reckless driving, depending on the circumstances. You are permitted to use a device that is voice-operated or hands-free, however.

Talking on a mobile device while driving is also permitted unless you’re a commercial driver. In this case, operators of commercial vehicles, including trucks, buses, and vans, are not allowed to talk or text on a handheld device when operating a vehicle. They are permitted to use voice-operated or hands-free devices, as well as electronic equipment that is incorporated into the commercial vehicle itself. A commercial driver caught disobeying this law would also be subject to fines and other possible charges.  

Texting While Driving vs. Drunk Driving

Driving while intoxicated has an impact on your judgment, ability to steer, response time, hand-eye coordination, and many other factors. Distracted driving is associated with many of the same effects, which has led many people to make a comparison between the two.

One could also argue that texting while driving is even more dangerous because it doesn’t carry the same stigma as drunk driving. While drunk driving is universally frowned upon, most people have engaged in texting while driving at some point. In fact, some motorists believe they’re “skilled” enough to text and drive, despite all evidence to the contrary.

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Other Types of Driving Distractions

While only texting and talking on mobile devices is explicitly prohibited by the law, there are many other driving distractions that can prove just as hazardous. Eating while driving draws your attention away from the road, as well as cause you to take your hands off the wheel. This impacts your ability to respond to a sudden situation, such as a stopped car in your lane.

Even talking with a passenger can cause a distraction in your vehicle. No matter how long a person has been driving or how confident they are in their abilities, a person’s full attention should be paid on the road at all times to prevent a serious accident.

How Can It Be Prevented?

While you can’t stop other motorists from driving distracted, you can take steps to limit the behaviors in your own vehicle. Turn your mobile device off and store it far away from you when driving. If you’re using a GPS, set the destination before leaving home. Also, be careful when changing the radio station or talking to passengers. If you’re traveling with young kids or pets, make sure they’re properly secured in the back seat before heading out. 

What to Do If You’re Injured by a Distracted Driver

Proving fault in a car accident case, even one that involves distracted driving, can be difficult. That’s why you need a skilled legal representative during your case, one that will offer practical legal guidance as well as emotional support.

Here are Martinez, Hart, Sanchez & Romero, we genuinely care about our clients. We’re your neighbors and we want to see you make a full recovery after an accident. Our Albuquerque distracted driving attorneys also want to see the responsible party brought to justice, both for your peace of mind and to deter others from making the same mistakes.

Schedule a consultation with our firm today by calling (505) 806-1780. If you’d like to learn more about our legal services or distracted driving laws, be sure to contact us.

"Not only are they highly competent, ethical, smart and efficient, they are very kind. They have provided the best representation and assistance imaginable and I would, without any reservation whatsoever, highly recommend this law firm."
Dorian D.
Our History

Martinez, Hart, Sanchez & Romero, P.C. is a local law firm with local and national recognition for having the expertise to handle the toughest cases. Over a century ago, David B. Martinez’s grandparents realized their dream of building a general store at the corner of Rio Grande and Indian School. “A century later, David B. Martinez and F. Michael Hart built this law firm on the same corner of Rio Grande and Indian School where David’s family had built their general store.” The corner of Rio Grande and Indian School is now home to Martinez, Hart, Sanchez & Romero, P.C., which holds the same dedication to serving the needs of the surrounding community.