New technology could help in distracted driving cases

It can be dangerous to use a cellphone while driving on Arizona roads or any others throughout the country. While many states have partial or complete bans on using cellphones while a vehicle is moving, it can be hard to prove if a person was using one when a crash occurred. In Nevada, lawmakers are considering using a device called a textalyzer to analyze a driver's phone after a crash. 

The device would be connected to the phone and look for any activity such as sending a text message or opening a social media page. Authorities say that current laws do little to dissuade people from using their phones while driving. They also say that instances of distracted driving are not always reported, so using such a device to detect activity prior to a crash may help make roads safer. However, the technology has not yet been tested in the field, which means there is no proof that it works as intended.

There are also concerns about whether the use of this technology would violate a person's Fourth Amendment rights. The company that makes the device says that it does not access personal information that may be stored on a phone. According to the Nevada bill, a police officer would need to obtain a warrant to gain access to a person's phone after an accident if they do not consent to their phone being searched.

Distracted drivers who cause motor vehicle accidents may be held liable for injuries or property damage that result from them. It may be possible to prove that a driver was distracted when an accident occurred by reviewing cellphone records or video evidence from the crash site. An attorney may help gather such evidence and negotiate for a settlement.

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  • United States District Court | District Of Arizona
  • Maricopa Country Bar Association
  • State Bar Of Arizona
  • United States Court Of Appeals | Ninth Circuit

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