How to Handle a Car Accident Involving a Drunk Driver
Despite the efforts of law enforcement and the California legislature, drunk driving is still a major problem and a top cause of car accidents throughout the state. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control, there are more than 110 million self-reported instances of adults driving while impaired. Consider as well that more than one in four traffic deaths involve alcohol.
California, like every other state, has a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to drunk driving. If you have been in an accident with a person who was under the influence of alcohol, they are likely to face criminal charges. You may also be able to hold them accountable via personal injury lawsuit. Keep reading to find out how to handle this tricky situation and then contact Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas at 877-982-0707 for a free legal consultation.
How to interact with a driver that seems to be drunk
The first priority after any vehicle accident is to ensure that you and your passengers are safe and that any injuries are treated. After that, you should generally exchange contact information with the other driver. If that driver is drunk, this may not be possible or advised. Instead, stay in your vehicle or another safe location until the police arrive.
Signs you are dealing with an intoxicated driver
In some instances it is very obvious that the other driver is drunk. In others, it can be harder to tell. If you can smell alcohol on their breath or you see alcohol cans or bottles in their car, or puddles of liquid outside of their car, they may be drunk. If they have red or glossy eyes, they seem confused, their speech is slurred, or they have impaired motor function, they may be drunk. Be careful though because these can also be signs of traumatic brain injury. It is always best to let the police deal with the situation.
Take video to use as evidence
If the driver does not want to wait for the police or ambulance to arrive, then you may want to take video to use as evidence that they were drunk. We do not recommend that you point the video straight at them or tell they are being taped. Simply turn on your recorder and let it capture what is going on. You can also take a video of their car, their license plate number, and the state of your vehicle.
Talk to a personal injury attorney
Once you have dealt with the police, have ensured that you and your passengers are safe, and have gathered as much information as possible, it is time to contact a personal injury attorney to find out what your legal options are. You can reach Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas at 877-982-0707 for a free legal consultation.