With the term “distracted driving,” most people think of texting, but there are many other types of distractions, including having pets in the car. Distracted driving refers to anything that takes the driver’s attention, hands or eyes off the road.
It is important for drivers to avoid all forms of distraction while behind the wheel. An unrestrained pet in your vehicle may cause you to divert your attention away from the road, potentially leading to a serious accident.
Pets can cause drivers to be distracted if:
While you want to make your pet comfortable, it is important that your pet does not put you and others on the road at risk for an accident.
Fortunately, there are several strategies you can use to prevent your pet from becoming a distraction, including:
California state law prohibits anyone from transporting an unrestrained animal in the open back of a vehicle, except for livestock or a dog for the purposes of ranching or farming. The animal must be tethered to the vehicle, in a cage or other container, or in a vehicle that has been retrofitted to prevent the animal from getting out.
There is no specific law in California that requires pet restraints for enclosed vehicles, but the driver is responsible for avoiding distractions while behind the wheel. An unrestrained pet in a car can make it difficult to maintain safe control of the vehicle, potentially causing serious injuries to the pet and passengers if a collision occurs.
If you were injured in an accident that may have been caused by a distracting pet, contact the Arnold Law Firm. Our knowledgeable attorneys can evaluate your case and determine if the other driver may have been acting in a negligent manner.
We can discuss your legal options during a free, no-obligation consultation. We work on a contingency fee basis, so there is no fee for our services unless we recover compensation for your case.