Driving drunk is a reckless and dangerous decision that puts others in harm’s way. There is never any reason for an intoxicated person to get behind the wheel. Drunk drivers hurt innocent people. Fatal drunk driving accidents take family members from their loved ones. Driving under the influence is a selfish decision that can destroy families and lives.
If a drunk driver caused your injuries, a Long Beach drunk driving accident lawyer can help you hold them accountable for their unlawful and negligent actions. You may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and more. Call (800) 598-7557 for a free consultation with Ben Crump Law, PLLC.
Drinking and Driving Is Negligent
Drunk driving accidents are completely avoidable. If drivers did not consume alcohol and get behind the wheel, they would not happen. Drivers owe others on the road a duty of care. Driving while intoxicated is a breach of that duty and qualifies as negligence. If a driver under the influence of alcohol hurt you or your loved one, they may be legally responsible for your costs.
Car accidents can have life-altering consequences. Accidents can result in traumatic brain injuries, paralysis, or loss of a limb. You may need multiple medical procedures, rehabilitation services, and long-term care to recover. Your injuries may also permanently change the way you live. Severe injuries might prevent you from doing the same job you had before your accident. You may no longer be able to participate in the activities and hobbies you once enjoyed. Your injuries may even change the way you are able to interact with your family.
A Long Beach drunk driving accident lawyer can fight for awards to cover the medical expenses you have already incurred, as well as money for your future services and treatments. You may be able to accomplish this outside of court. Your lawyer can attempt to seek a settlement through the other driver’s automobile insurance.
However, California only requires minimum liability coverage of $15,000 for one injured person or $30,000 for two injured people, according to the California Department of Insurance. If your costs exceed this, or your attorney and the insurer do not agree on a settlement, you can sue the drunk driver.
In a civil lawsuit, you can also pursue a settlement for your pain, emotional distress, and reduction in quality of life. If a drunk driving accident resulted in your loved one’s death, you may seek awards in their name via a wrongful death suit. You may also win compensation for your emotional suffering and financial losses.
For a free legal consultation with a drunk driving accidents lawyer serving Long Beach, call 800-598-7557
Alcohol Impairs Your Judgement and Ability to Safely Operate a Vehicle
Anyone who drinks and drives is taking an irresponsible risk, not only with their own safety but also with the safety of everyone else they encounter on the road. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or higher is enough to significantly increase the risk of a car crash. This is why 0.08 is the legal limit in all 50 states.
The effects of alcohol and your degree of impairment increase with consumption. Even a BAC of 0.02 can cause some loss of judgment, a decrease in visual functions, and a decline in your ability to multitask. BACs of 0.08 or higher may result in reduced coordination and muscle control, delayed reaction time, and severely impaired decision making. This may cause you to perform dangerous driving maneuvers or lose control of your vehicle.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that drunk driving accidents claim the lives of nearly 30 people every day in the United States. This is about one death every 30 minutes. The annual cost of drunk driving-related crashes is more than $40 billion.
Because drunk driving is so clearly dangerous, California prohibits it under Vehicle Code (VEH) §23152. The same law makes it illegal for drivers to operate a vehicle under the influence of any drug. It also establishes a legal limit of 0.04 for drivers operating a commercial motor vehicle or driving passengers for hire.
According to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), a first DUI conviction may result in up to six months in jail and a fine of between $390 and $1,000. Those convicted will have their driver’s license suspended for at least six months and will be required to complete a DUI program. The state may also require the installation of an ignition interlock device (IID) on their vehicle. An IID will prevent a driver from starting their car until they take a breathalyzer test to determine BAC. If a driver is over the legal limit, their vehicle will not start.
DUI convictions will remain on a driver’s record for ten years. Subsequent DUI offenses will result in stricter penalties. The DMV also warns that DUI accidents involving injuries or death may result in civil lawsuits.
Long Beach Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Near Me 800-598-7557
Working with Ben Crump Law, PLLC
At Ben Crump Law, PLLC, we take the rights of victims seriously. You should not have to pay for the damage caused by a drunk driver. We want to help you seek the awards to which you may be entitled.
A Long Beach drunk driving accident lawyer can help you obtain records related to your crash, such as any investigations conducted by law enforcement or documentation relating to the other driver’s BAC. Your attorney can help you locate witnesses or video footage that helps prove fault in your case. Your lawyer will also make sure you ask for enough compensation to fully cover the costs of your injuries and necessary treatments.
All of this may take time, so be sure to reach out to our team before the statute of limitations expires. You have two years to file suit for personal injury or wrongful death, according to Code of Civil Procedure (CCP) §335.1. To begin working on your case, contact our offices at (800) 598-7557 for a free consultation.