According to the Florida Department of Transportation, distracted driving occurs whenever a driver engages in any physical activities or mental activities which remove a driver’s focus from vehicle operations. Distracted driving can result in truck accidents, which can cause serious or permanent injury.
Distracted driving in Florida is grouped into a few different categories: distraction due to cell phones or other electronic communication devices; distraction resulting from GPS devices or other electronic devices; in-vehicle distractions; distractions from outside of the vehicle; texting; and a general failure to pay attention. Texting and driving has been prohibited for all drivers in Florida by Florida State Statute 316.305.
Distracted driving can be especially dangerous for operators of large commercial motor vehicles. According to one 2009 study reported on by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), 71 percent of collisions involving large trucks occurred when the truck operator was doing some other task besides just driving the vehicle.
FMCSA also reported on a 2006 study showing inattention was the single leading cause of both collisions and near-collisions. In close to 80 percent of large truck crashes, some type of driver inattention occurred in the three seconds before the collision or near-collision.
Distracted driving can be considered a type of driver negligence, which can result in truck drivers and their employers being held liable for any collisions that occur due to inattention. Victims and surviving family members may subpoena telephone records and consult with accident reconstruction specialists to prove a truck collision occurred due to driver distraction.