According to statistics provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, over 10,000 individuals were killed in alcohol related traffic accidents. Any collision on the road can potentially lead to serious injuries or death, but the impaired state of a drunk driver increases the chances of severe consequences as the result of a motor vehicle accident.
A blood alcohol content level, which is measured through a blood, breath, or urine analysis, over .08 is considered legally intoxicated, and the person is unfit to drive according to the law. Unfortunately, thousands of drivers operate their cars, trucks, or motorcycles in an impaired state every year, endangering the lives of others on the road.
Despite this being a widespread issue, many people are still misinformed about drunk driving. When deciding to drive in a drunken state, a person knowingly puts others at risk and is therefore acting negligently. Those who are hurt because of the driver’s actions may be able to hold them accountable for the resulting damages.
The dangers of driving while impaired include:
- Slowed reaction time
- Vision impairments, including blurred vision or decreased night vision
- Inability to keep track of the car’s position on the road
- Reduced hand to eye coordination and other muscle control
- Impaired ability to make reasonable decisions, or increased tendency for risks
These effects and others tend to increase the severity of drunk driving accident injuries. For instance, drivers with a high amount of alcohol in their system may be more prone to excessive speeding or extremely dangerous actions, such as going the wrong way on the interstate.
In the event of a crash, victims are often shouldered with overwhelming costs. Medical bills, lost wages, and the cost of any extended care can quickly add up, leaving the victims of drunk driving scrambling for financial relief. Insurance companies will sometimes offer a settlement in these situations. While an offered amount may sound like a solution to all of your problems, the amount often does not truly cover all of the burdens resulting from the accident. For instance, if a victim breaks her leg in the accident she may be facing weeks of missed wages from her job, prescription medications, surgeries, equipment such as crutches, and months of physical therapy. If the victim accepts a settlement, they will not be able to seek any future payments, so they must make sure that the amount fully covers all of the associated expenses.
Legal Counsel for Victims of Drunk Drivers
It can be challenging to determine how much is needed to cover all of the damages caused by an accident, and standing up to insurance companies can be an intimidating process. If you’ve been hurt through the negligent decision of another driver to operate a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, the injury lawyer at The Gutierrez Law Firm can carefully analyze your situation and help you decide on the best way to proceed.