Seminole Drunk Driving Accident Attorney
In the 1990s, authorities at multiple levels launched an effort to get “drunk drivers” off the road. This effort included stricter laws and tougher law enforcement tactics. All these years later, alcohol still causes about the same proportion of fatal car crashes as it did back then. Laws and police procedures are relatively easy to change. It’s much harder to change driver habits. Coronavirus lockdowns made this problem worse, as people self-medicated during the pandemic and traffic enforcement dropped significantly in many areas.
“Drunk” drivers aren’t the only problem. Alcohol impairment begins with the first drink. This impairment includes clouded judgment and reduced muscle control. These things violate the duty of care. Motorists have a legal responsibility to be at their best, physically, mentally, and otherwise, before they get behind the wheel. Impaired and intoxicated drivers knowingly ignore this risk and intentionally put other people in danger.
Therefore, a tough-minded Seminole drunk driving accident attorney at The Reep Law Firm are often able to obtain additional compensation in these cases. Since the medical bills in a serious injury case average more than $100,000, victims badly need this compensation. Other economic losses include property damage and missed work. Furthermore, they deserve it, since their injuries were not their fault. Financial compensation helps these victims move forward with their lives, which at this point, is the best possible result.
Car Crash Injuries
We touched on the excessively high medical bills in car crash cases above. Some of the serious injuries these victims incur include:
- Head Injuries: The motion of a wreck, as opposed to a trauma impact, often causes a head injury. During a wreck, a victim’s brain slams violently and repeatedly against the insides of the skull. The resulting damage is usually permanent. Doctors and physical therapists can only treat the symptoms.
- Exsanguination: Excessive blood loss, normally from internal injuries, is often the official cause of death in car accident cases. The slightest internal abrasions cause massive bleeding, since these organs have no protective skin layer.
- Broken Bones: The most advanced restraint systems can only absorb so much force. Since the arms and legs usually flail during wrecks, shattered arm and leg bones are quite common. Since doctors must use very aggressive measures to set these bones, these victims face long and difficult recoveries.
Emotionally, about half of car crash victims must deal with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. PTSD is a chemical imbalance in the brain that causes symptoms like depression, hypervigilance, and anger.
We also touched on the difference between impairment and intoxication above. Evidence of impairment includes:
- Prior visits to places where alcohol was available,
- Erratic driving before the wreck,
- Physical driver symptoms, such as bloodshot eyes, and
- Tortfeasor’s (negligent driver’s) statements to witnesses about alcohol consumption.
The burden of proof in a civil claim is only a preponderance of the evidence (more likely than not). So, a little proof goes a long way.
Evidence of intoxication includes citations for DUI and other such offenses. In Florida, if a tortfeasor violates a penal safety law and that violation substantially causes injury, the tortfeasor is liable for damages as a matter of law.
Florida has a broad negligence per se law, and also a broad dram shop law. Restaurants, bars, and other commercial alcohol providers could be vicariously liable for car crash and other damages if they knowingly serve individuals who are habitually addicted to alcohol.
Connect With a Hard-Hitting Pinellas County Attorney
Injury victims are entitled to substantial compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced Seminole drunk driver accident attorney, contact Reep, Coleman & Stubbendorff. Attorneys can connect victims with doctors, even if they have no insurance or money.