If you happen to be sharing a West Virginia highway with someone who consumed alcohol prior to getting behind the wheel, you might notice some signs of intoxicated behavior. While the legal blood alcohol content (BAC) level in this state is .08, a person can have a “buzz” when his or her BAC is lower than that. A DUI not only places you or anyone else in the driver’s vicinity at risk for personal injury, but it also puts lives in danger.
If you notice erratic driving behavior, it suggests possible intoxication of the driver. You might be fortunate enough to be able to take the next exit or somehow create distance between your vehicle and the suspected drunk driver. However, there may also be times when you know it’s best to get away from a particular driver but are unable to do so in a swift and safe manner. It only takes an instant for a tragedy to occur.
DUI drivers often experience inhibited judgment
A drunk driver loses some of his or her ability to think critically and form reasonable decisions. The effects of alcohol on a person’s body, for instance, might cause him or her to misjudge road space when navigating a turn. A driver in this condition could hit you, causing serious injuries to you or someone in your vehicle at the time.
Lack of coordination makes a drunk driver clumsy
As BAC rises in a person’s body, he or she may be less coordinated than is common during sobriety. A person committing DUI might accidentally step on the brake instead of gas pedal or vice versa, which could have disastrous results. Drunk drivers often use the wrong turn signal or forget to turn on headlights at night. Alcohol causes vision impairment when BAC reaches a certain point. This means that an intoxicated driver might be seeing two sets of yellow lines when there’s only one.
Gathering evidence of DUI after personal injury occurs
Thousands of people in West Virginia and throughout the country die every year because of drunk drivers. If you survive personal injury in a drunk driving accident, you might need to take a lot of time off work to attend medical visits or physical therapy appointments. You might also need to spend quiet time at home, especially if you have a severe injury like a concussion, skull fracture or spinal cord damage.
It’s not uncommon for a DUI collision to spark financial distress, which is why West Virginia personal injury laws allow recovering victims to seek restitution in civil court. There are also ways to settle a request for financial recovery without stepping foot inside a courtroom.