All 50 states in our country now apply two statutory offenses for driving under the influence of alcohol. The first and original offense is known by three different names, driving under the influence (DUI), driving while intoxicated or while impaired (DWI), or operating a vehicle while intoxicated or impaired (OWI). This is usually based on an officer’s observations (e.g., driving behavior, sobriety tests, slurring of speech, etc.) The second offense is known as the “illegal per se” statute, which refers to driving with a blood alcohol concentration above 0.08 g/dL. Since 2002, every state in the Union has agreed that a BAC of 0.08 makes a driver alcohol-impaired, but some studies have shown that operators have problems at even lower levels. (Alcohol Alert!)
We talk about the statistics all the time on this blog. Six million car accidents happen in the United States each year, and thousands of people lose their lives because of them. For many people, it is easy to fall into the trap of thinking “Oh, that’s just something that I read about in the news, it won’t happen to me.” However, drunk driving truly is an epidemic, and it affects a much larger number of people than you might think. Of all the fatal accidents that happen each year, 32% involve alcohol-impaired drivers, and three in every ten Americans will have to deal with an alcohol related accident at some point in their lives. (Mothers Against Drunk Driving)
This is a real problem that affects real people, and just because you go out of your way to drive safely doesn’t mean that you will be able to account for everyone else on the road as well. Many of the thousands of the people who are killed and injured in drunk driving car accidents did nothing wrong, and were simply in the wrong place at the wrong time. Our lawyers know that it is a scary feeling lying in a hospital bed, wondering how you are going to pay for your medical bills and support your family if you can’t go back to work. That’s why we are committed to making sure that the victims of personal injury accidents have the information and representation they need when seeking compensation.
In a recent case, our attorneys worked with a 23-year-old client who had suffered multiple leg fractures in an automobile collision. Our team was able to give her the guidance she needed when she needed it most, and made sure that the insurance company couldn’t take advantage of her. Eventually, the suit was settled, and we were able to recover $2.07 million to help her in her transition back to a normal life. This is just one of the hundreds of cases that we handle every year, and if you have been injured by a negligent or reckless driver, we are happy to help you too.