Feb 2015

Could Your Cell Phone Records Provide Evidence After an Irvine Rear-End Accident?

Accidents happen every day in Los Angeles, Irvine, Santa Ana, and Riverside, but many are just passing news stories that go unnoticed. When a celebrity is involved in a collision, however, it becomes major news. Just recently, for example, former Olympian and reality television star Bruce Jenner was involved in a serious motor vehicle collision that involved four vehicles and one fatality. According got ABC News, the accident was a chain-reaction collision that began after a rear-end collisioncrash-1-1406893-m

When a rear-end accident occurs, the driver in the rear vehicle is usually the one who is held responsible for causing the crash because drivers are expected to always maintain a safe distance between their car and the vehicle in front of them. Maintaining a safe distance means the driver in the rear should have time to react and stop before striking the front vehicle. However, even through the rear driver is often to blame, this doesn’t mean that there won’t be an investigation.

Phone Records Are Commonly Investigated in Rear-end Crashes

When an investigation into an accident happens, law enforcement officers generally look for many clues into the behavior of the drivers leading up to the crash. This is especially true in fatal accidents when someone is killed.

The accident involving Jenner is no exception. The Claims Journal reports that law enforcement officers have requested that all drivers involved in the accident turn over their cellphone records to the sheriff’s office. If the drivers do not cooperate and voluntarily turn over their records, then it is likely that police will subpoena them.

The goal of obtaining the records is to look at whether the phone was being used at the time when the accident happened. If the driver is found to have been on a call at the time of the crash, this can raise questions about whether the motorist was using a hands-free kit or was holding the phone. It can also raise questions about whether the driver was behaving in a responsible and safe way, or was focused on the call and not on his or her driving.

Obtaining phone records after rear-end accidents is also a very common investigatory tool in order to determine if the driver was texting at the time when the accident occurred. A driver who is texting may not see when the car in front of him has stopped, and thus may be more likely to cause a rear-end crash.

Determining if someone is texting at the time of a collision can be more difficult because there isn’t a record of all of the times the driver was looking down at the phone or typing as there is when the motorist is actually speaking on a call. However, police typically look at whether there are multiple texts spanning a period of time immediately surrounding the crash. If so, this can suggest a driver was texting at the time of the rear and accident and should perhaps be held accountable for crash losses.

If you’ve been injured, or you lost a loved one, contact the Law Offices of Daniel C. Carlton at (949) 757-0707 to speak with a personal injury attorney in Irvine, CA.  Serving Los Angeles, Irvine, Santa Ana, Riverside and surrounding areas.