Earlier this week in Texas, an accident between a pick-up truck and a bus claimed the lives of 13 of the 14 people aboard the bus. According to a local news report covering the tragic accident, the bus was heading back from a church retreat when the collision occurred.
Evidently, moments before the accident, another motorist who was driving behind the pick-up truck that caused the accident noticed that the truck was swerving in and out of the lane of oncoming traffic. The motorist called 911 and told operators, “he’s going to hit somebody head on or he’s going to kill his own self. Somebody needs to get this guy off the road.” The motorist’s girlfriend, who was also in the vehicle with him, took out her phone and began recording the truck’s erratic movements. The motorist made several calls before the truck crossed over into oncoming traffic and collided head-on with the bus.
After the accident, the motorist who had called the police confronted the driver of the pick-up truck, who told him, “I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I was texting.” Due to the seriousness of the accident and the number of fatalities, the federal National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is joining in the investigation with state authorities. The NTSB declined to comment on the accident but did indicate that distracted driving would be among the issues the agency investigates.
New Mexico Rules Against Texting While Driving
New Mexico has a strict law in place that prohibits drivers from texting or talking on the phone while behind the wheel. The law does allow for drivers to talk on cell phones if they are using a hands-free device. There is also an exception for texting in the case of an emergency.
While the fines for texting while driving are small at $25 for a first offense and $50 for a second offense, the fact that there is a law in place against texting while driving can help an accident victim recover compensation for their injuries through a personal injury lawsuit. For example, an accident victim may be able to prove that a driver was negligent simply by showing that they were using a phone while behind the wheel.
Have You Been Injured in a New Mexico Truck Accident?
If you or a loved one has recently been injured in a New Mexico truck or bus accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. Distracted driving is among the leading causes of truck accidents nationwide, and juries routinely issue plaintiff verdicts in cases involving distracted truck drivers. The skilled personal injury and wrongful death attorneys at the Fine Law Firm have extensive experience representing clients in all types of accident cases, including bus accidents, truck accidents, and train accidents. To learn more about how New Mexico law may apply to your case, call 505-889-FINE to schedule your free consultation with an attorney today. Calling is free and will not result in any obligation on your part unless we can help you obtain the compensation you deserve.
More Blog Posts:
The Importance of Truck Driver Training and Compliance in New Mexico, New Mexico Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, March 7, 2017.
The Impact and Implications of Drug Use Among Truck Drivers in New Mexico, New Mexico Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, March 28, 2017.