Distracted Driving

Charlotte Criminal Lawyer Brad Smith answers the question: “Am I allowed to videotape an interaction with police? Can they make me stop filming?”


Distracted driving is a term that has become more common in the last several years. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), distracted driving causes more than a quarter of a million injuries and more than 3,000 deaths each year. States, including North Carolina, have enacted laws that ban texting while driving, one of the most common forms of distraction. If you are accused of distracted driving, you will want to consider defending the case in court. Speak with an experienced North Carolina attorney to discuss the details of your case.


driving-Charlotte-Monroe-Mooresville-Distracted-Driving-ticket-attorney-300x239What is Distracted Driving?


Distracted driving is any activity that takes your eyes off the road, your hands off the wheel, or your mind off of driving. Some examples of distracted driving include texting, eating or drinking, reading, using a GPS, changing the radio station, talking to passengers, applying cosmetics, and many others. The most common form of distracted driving is the use of a cell phone. Texting and emailing while driving are against the law. However, it can be difficult for the state to prove that you were indeed driving while distracted. Teen drivers are not allowed to use a cell phone at all while behind the wheel.


Can I Get a Ticket for Distracted Driving?


The short answer is yes, law enforcement can give you a ticket for distracted driving. If you are stopped for another violation, the police can ticket you for texting while driving if they find out that you were engaging in that activity. The police can also stop you specifically for texting while driving since it is illegal. The police may see you while you are using your phone while driving, which can immediately cause them to pull you over. You may also receive a ticket for distracted driving as part of a traffic accident if the police find that you were engaging in distracting activities.


Preventing Distracted Driving


Distracted driving can have devastating consequences, but it can be prevented. The North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) provides some guidance for avoiding distracted driving. Make sure you are prepared for driving before you start your trip. Allow enough time before you drive to eat and take care of grooming activities. Review your cell phone and respond to messages before you get behind the wheel. Then, put your phone on “do not disturb” for the entirety of your trip so you are not tempted to use it. Pay attention to the road and do not think of other tasks while you are driving. Put pets in a carrier and if you encounter a problem with a passenger pull over to handle the situation before moving on.


If you are guilty of texting while driving, you will face penalties that could include fines of up to $100. Distracted driving may be part of other charges, specifically if you are involved in an accident that is your fault. Please contact us today to get a phone, video or in-person consultation by calling at (704) 370-2828 to speak with our detail-oriented and well-versed lawyers with offices in Charlotte, Lake Norman, and Monroe, please contact Arnold & Smith, PLLC today or find additional resources here.







The criminal defense attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC make it their mission to zealously defend their clients on a wide range of criminal matters at both the state and federal levels. These matters may include any charge from traffic offenses; DWI/DUI; drug charges (from simple possession to possession with intent to distribute and trafficking); gun permit denials; weapons offenses; and property crimes (larceny, breaking and entering, robbery, fraud, embezzlement, white collar offenses); to sexually related offenses (indecent exposure; sexual assault, crimes against nature, removal from sex offender registry); and violent crimes (domestic violence; assault; manslaughter; homicide, murder). Other legal issues that Arnold & Smith, PLLC criminal clients may be facing include restraining orders, restraining order and probation violations, expungements; appeals; and immigration issues related to criminal charges. Our criminal defense attorneys are passionate about ensuring that individuals empower themselves by being informed about their constitutional rights, and stand at the ready to fight in the defense of those facing criminal charges.







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