It is very rare that you would see a motorcyclist texting-while-driving, but if you did see one, the motorcyclist would be breaking the law. Similarly, it is illegal in the state of Virginia to text and drive an automobile. Nevertheless, we have all seen someone next to us in traffic, completely engrossed in the process of typing on his or her smartphone and not fully paying attention to the traffic.
Motorcyclists don’t tend to text and drive because it would be extremely irresponsible to engage in this kind of behavior. One false move can spell disaster for a motorcyclist, who has virtually zero protection in a collision situation — aside from a helmet and some protective clothing. Meanwhile, automobile drivers inherently feel safer behind their airbags with the protection of a thick and heavy steel frame. This sense of security means that automobile drivers take more risks with safety — risks that often result in crashes, serious injury and even death.
It is due to the dangers of texting-while-driving — many experts say that it is riskier than drunk driving — that the state of Virginia has enacted strict laws surrounding cellphone use while operating a motor vehicle. Car drivers will receive citations if they are caught texting while driving; and, if they cause a serious or fatal crash due to being distracted by their cellphones, they could even go to jail.
Motorcyclists harmed by distracted “texters” in Virginia can seek justice in civil court. Cellphone records of the driver responsible for the crash can be used as evidence against him or her to seek financial compensation for the cost of medical care, property damage and other kinds of damages suffered by the innocent party in the crash.