Distracted driving is a problem everywhere and is a concern in Ohio. Ohio has had a distracted driving law for 5 years but a period of informing drivers about the dangers of distracted driving preceded enforcement of the law. Texting while driving is banned in Ohio and novice drivers are prohibited from using a cell phone while driving. Following the education campaign period, authorities began issuing tickets for distracted driving and the fine for adult drivers is $150.
In Ohio, distracted driving is considered a secondary offense which requires the police officer to pull the driver over for another violation to also be able to cite them for texting while driving or distracted driving; in other words, in Ohio, the police officer cannot pull the driver over for texting while driving alone. Drivers in Ohio are not permitted to use an electronic device to compose, send or read text messages while driving. Distracted driving can cause extensive damages to victims.
Victims of a distracted driver may unexpectedly face extensive medical costs and the need for medical care and treatment; lost wages and the inability to work while they struggle to recover from a distracted driving-related accident; and pain and suffering as a result of the harm suffered at the hands of a distracted driver. When distracted drivers do not put down the phone and harm victims, they may be liable to compensate them for their damages.
A personal injury claim for damages can help hold a distracted driver accountable and help victims recover compensation for the physical, financial and emotional costs they have suffered associated with a distracted driving-related accident. It is vital that victims of distracted drivers are familiar with the legal protections available to them when harmed.
Source: DMV.com, “Ohio Distracted Driving Laws,” John Counts, Oct. 26, 2017