Distracted drivers cause a massive amount of crashes each year. One of the worst and most frequent forms of driver distraction is texting on a cell phone.
Most states have made texting and holding your phone while driving illegal. Some did so long ago. Unfortunately, Missouri is not one of them. At least not for most drivers.
Under 21s cannot text while driving. Nor can commercial drivers. These are the only category of drivers currently banned from texting while driving. They are also banned from holding their phone in their hand while driving.
Does that mean that it is safe for those over 21 to text and drive?
It’s a good question. There were two bills introduced this year to make it illegal for everyone. Unfortunately, neither passed into legislation. So as of now, most drivers can still hold their phones to their ears and talk, or read and return text messages while on the move without worrying about the police charging them with a phone-specific offense.
That being said, the police might still arrest them for reckless driving if for example, their phone use saw them swerving across the road.
When someone does something illegal while driving, it can make it easier to claim compensation for the injuries they cause you as a result of it. Yet car crash claims always come down to showing how the driver’s actions contributed to the crash. So if you can show the other driver crashed into you because they were distracted by their phone, you should be able to get compensation, regardless of what the law says about their phone use.