In 2014 (the most recent year for which complete statistics are available), the highest number of Iowa distracted driving accidents caused by cell phones or other drivers was recorded. During 2014, the Iowa Department of Transportation attributed 771 accidents to driver’s distraction by cell phone or other device. Six people were killed and 330 people were hurt in these crashes.
Iowa Distracted Driving Laws
Currently, it is against the law in Iowa for:
- All drivers to text and drive.
- Novice drivers to use a cell phone in any way while driving.
There is currently no ban on handheld cell phones for drivers with full licenses, including school bus drivers.
Additionally, while there is no specific statute, it is against the law in Iowa to be negligent while driving. All drivers owe other motorists a duty of care. That duty of care may be breached if a driver takes his hands off the while, his eyes off the road, or his attention away from driving safely. A driver may be distracted, for example, if the driver is:
- Eating, drinking, or smoking while driving.
- Changing the music.
- Talking to or fighting with passengers.
- Attending to the needs of a child.
- Driving with a pet in the car.
- Trying to follow a GPS or map.
- Engrossed in an audio book.
- Looking for or reaching for something in the passenger’s seat or in the backseat.
If one of these behaviors—or any other distracted behavior—resulted in a driver causing an accident, then anyone who was hurt in that crash may be able to recover from the distracted and negligent driver.
Did a Distracted Driver Cause Your Crash?
Right after the moment of impact, you may be unable to answer that question. You likely don’t know what the other driver was doing at the time your crash occurred. However, a complete investigation into the cause of your crash can determine whether a distracted driver caused your accident and whether you may be able to recover compensation for your injuries and damages. To learn more about how such an investigation may be done and about how to protect your rights, please start a live chat with us today.