Drivers staring at cellphone screens instead of the road ahead are a worryingly common sight in Florida, and this has led to a sharp increase in distracted driving crashes. Accident investigators may suspect distraction was a factor when motorists who were involved in collisions failed to apply their brakes, but there may be other reasons no evasive action was taken. Modern automobile braking systems are highly sophisticated, and minor defects or mistakes made by mechanics can sometimes cause them to fail.
Human error is a factor in most motor vehicle accidents, and even crashes caused by braking system failures are often blamed on negligent drivers. Motorists are expected to inspect their tires and braking systems regularly, and they may face civil sanctions when property damage, injuries or deaths have been caused by inadequate maintenance.
When brake failures are caused by a manufacturing defect of some kind, attorneys may file lawsuits on behalf of accident victims against the car makers involved. Product liability litigation can be complex and challenging and the defendants in these cases often have much at stake, but plaintiffs may be awarded punitive in addition to compensatory damages should they prevail.
When car accident reports suggest that distraction may have played a role, experienced personal injury attorneys may have the vehicle involved mechanically inspected to rule out catastrophic brake failure. Most modern vehicles are equipped with data recorders, and the information stored on these devices can sometimes reveal the causes of an accident. Attorneys could also scrutinize the cellphone records of the driver involved to determine whether or not they were distracted when they crashed.