How can a Philadelphia Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer fight for your rights?
Drunk driving is considered a reckless act and is the reason behind numerous road accidents every year. The attorneys at the Law Offices of Samuel Fishman help drunk driving accident victims in pursuing compensation for their losses. Our legal team will assist you in filing a claim to recover for damages you suffered at the hands of negligent drunk drivers.
A drunken driving incident can mean an immense loss for the victim, and you may feel the financial impact resulting from the accident for months or years. Securing the assistance of an experienced Philadelphia Drunk Driving Accident Attorney will strengthen your case.
There are legal means to demand compensation for any loss that you have suffered due to a drunken-driving crash. After all, it’s your right to receive compensation for all the damages you suffered through no fault of your own.
You and your family may have incurred medical expenses, experienced suffering and pain, lost wages, grief counseling, and even funeral expenses. Our Philadelphia drunk driving accident lawyer ensures that an innocent victim gets the compensation they are due from a drunk driver’s negligence.
Common Types of accidents caused by drunk driving
Consumption of alcohol, sometimes even in limited quantities, can significantly impact the reaction time, coordination, and judgment of the driver. It often results in the driver making bad decisions and causing accidents. Some of the most common types of accidents that result from drunk driving are:
- Head-on car accidents: Drunk drivers often become too drowsy to keep their eyes open or end up falling asleep at the wheel. As a result, they might inadvertently crash, head-on, into the car in front. Likewise, because alcohol reduces the vision of an individual, this too can cause an automobile accident. Thus, their ability to perceive traffic signals and signs or comprehend the acts of the other drivers is severely compromised. Head-on car accidents can cause fatal injuries and serious damage. It is suggested to consult your Philadelphia DUI Lawyer to pursue compensation for your losses.
- Rear-end car accidents: A person’s ability to gauge distances is severely impaired, and their reaction time gets slowed down when they are intoxicated. Alcohol consumption can make them incapable of controlling their vehicle in time when the other driver stops ahead or slows down in front of them. Drunken drivers might also believe they have slowed down when, in reality, they have not. Such car or truck accidents can lead to traumatic brain injuries (TBI), spinal cord injuries, and back injuries. Sometimes, in extreme situations, wrongful death can also occur in drunken driving cases.
- Pedestrian accidents: Drunk driving can also cause many pedestrian accidents. When driving under the influence of alcohol, especially during the night, drivers with impaired vision might not notice pedestrians. Such accidents might cause serious injuries and even lead to death.
- Wrong-way collisions: An intoxicated driver may not be able to read or comprehend the traffic signs. He might not even realize that the vehicle is going the wrong way on the exit or entrance to a highway or a one-way street.
Some interesting facts about driving under the influence
|Three out of every ten Americans will be in a car accident caused by alcohol during their lifetimes.|
|A vehicular accident involving alcohol is four times more likely to occur at night than during the day.|
|Almost 75 percent of drivers who cause accidents while driving under the influence of alcohol are male.|
|Alcohol-related fatal accidents involving drivers aged 21-34 are more common than for any other age group.|
|On average, the Thanksgiving period has the highest number of traffic fatalities involving drunk drivers.|
How can a Philadelphia drunk driving accident lawyer waive a limited tort option?
An experienced Philadelphia drunk driving accident lawyer will ask you if you have selected the auto insurance policy’s limited tort option. You can recover compensation for pain and sufferings from the convicted driver even after choosing the insurance policy’s limited tort option. It remains the same even after the driver has completed the ARD (Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition) program in Pennsylvania instead of conviction.
In general, the limited tort option lets you get low-cost insurance. However, it also restricts your capacity to pursue the claim against negligent drivers for the suffering and pain that has been caused by the accident, unless you have severe injuries.
This limitation is waived if the driver causing the accident was driving under the influence. You can claim compensation for your suffering, regardless of how serious your injuries are. Besides pain and suffering, you can also demand compensation for lost wages, physical therapy, and other medical expenses.
Alarming Drunk Driving Statistics in the United States
2020 Shows A High Incidence Of Fatalities
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), nearly 32 people die in the United States due to drunk driving every day. If we take a glance at 2020 drunken driving statistics, there is a disturbing trend as there has been an increase of 14% as compared to 2019. In 2020, there were an estimated 11,654 deaths because of alcohol-impaired driving across the nation.
For years, NHTSA has been compiling data related to alcohol-induced fatalities and has found some damning consequences of blood alcohol concentration. Let’s take a closer look at some of them:
- The BAC level (.02) can cause a decline in visual functions and a decline in performance when doing two tasks simultaneously.
- The BAC level of (.05) or below can reduce coordination, limit the ability to track moving vehicles, and reduce the response to any driving situations in case of emergency.
- The BAC level (.08) can greatly affect concentration while driving, speed control, detection of traffic signals, and impaired perception.
- The BAC level (.10) can tremendously affect the ability to apply brakes when required while driving.
- The (.15) BAC level can have an adverse impact on the control of vehicles and problems in the processing of visual and auditory information.
Findings of DUI statistics (2016)
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 10,000 people died due to alcohol-impaired driving in 2016. Nearly 1 million drivers were arrested in 2016 for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI). Driving under the influence of drugs accounted for nearly 16% of motor vehicle crashes in the year 2016.
Dui Statistics in 2010 – An Eye Opener
Across the United States
In the United States, driving under the influence is considered a serious offense. Every year, DUI statistics reveal some hard-hitting realities. The following DUI statistics for 2010 show just how common – and dangerous – drunk driving is:
- Approximately 16,000 people were killed as a result of auto accidents caused by drivers who were drunk.
- One person was killed in a drunk driving accident every 45 minutes.
- About half of all traffic fatalities involved the use of alcohol.
However, deaths caused by drunk driving declined by nearly 5 percent between 2009 and 2010. This is likely due to increased awareness of the dangers of drunk driving as well as stricter DUI laws in many states.
Across the state of Pennsylvania
In Pennsylvania, the following DUI statistics held true for 2010:
- Alcohol-related car accidents decreased by approximately 300 from 2009.
- 459 people were killed in auto accidents involving drunk driving, which was an increase of 10 from 2009.
- On average, 34 drunk-driving-related accidents occurred every day.
- On average, 26 people were injured in drunk-driving-related accidents every day.
Signs of Driving While Impaired (DWI)
It is easy to analyze whether the driver is driving while impaired by knowing the signs. Some of the common signs of impaired driving include:
- Weaving or drifting in lanes;
- Tailgating other vehicles;
- Use of erratic brakes while driving;
- Reacting in an unusual way to the traffic signals;
- Driving too fast;
- Driving too slow;
- Headlights turned off while driving in the nighttime; or
- Taking wide turns.
To prevent accidents, if you notice another driver is driving while impaired you can report it to the law enforcement authorities near you. Call 911 and the incident can be brought to the attention of police by giving a license plate number or vehicle description. These safety measures can prevent accidents and injuries from happening.
Reasons to hire an experienced Philadelphia Drunk Driving Accident Attorney
The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) statistics on alcohol-related injuries and fatalities are shocking. If you have been involved in an accident where the driver was drunk, you should consider taking help from one of the legal experts.
Though you can always represent yourself in such cases, it is better to have an experienced accident lawyer handle the proceedings. This may increase your chances of obtianing a fair settlement in the following ways:
- Detailed scrutiny of the case: If you choose our law firm, our DUI attorneys will review your case with a keen eye and leave out no details. We will work out the way, be it talking to the witnesses or looking at the traffic camera footage.
- In-depth knowledge of the DUI laws: A well-reputed legal professional who has handled many cases similar to yours will clearly understand the steps to take to get you fair compensation for your pain and suffering.
- Negotiation of fair settlements: Remember that your insurance company wants to make a profit, and is not inclined to make large payouts unless they have to. However, when you have legal guidance, you will be ensured that you don’t have to accept an unfair settlement.
- Be your support in the court: If a settlement between the parties cannot be reached, trial becomes necessary. But, you do not have to worry about your case when a knowledgeable professional is representing your case.
What are the different legal alternatives in drunken driving cases?
One of the first steps that you must take in case of drunken driving is to file a claim with the insurance company of the driver whose negligence caused the incident. In most cases, the settlement offer from the insurance company is not sufficient in drunken driving accidents. However, if the insurance carrier of the at-fault driver is insufficient, there may be a requirement of filing a personal injury lawsuit.
A Philadelphia DUI attorney can help you to know different alternatives that you have. Sometimes, it may happen that in drunken driving cases the insurance company may offer a fair settlement amount. Agreeing to a settlement helps you save the time and money of going to a jury trial. A competent attorney can help you determine what a fair settlement amount is in your situation.
Contact Our DUI Lawyers for Immediate Legal Help
So, if you have suffered injuries in a drunken-driving accident, and you are looking for an experienced drunk driving accident lawyer, consult The Law Offices of Samuel Fishman today.
Common Questions about Drunken Driving Cases
Can I sue my neighbors if their teenage guests were drinking and hit my car?
You may be able to hold the adult neighbors responsible for their negligent supervision of the teenagers. However, hosts cannot be held responsible for their guests’ actions in every circumstance.
Can I sue a drunk driver if I was hurt in an accident as a passenger in the car?
Drivers are responsible for pedestrians, other drivers on the road, and their passengers, even when the driver is intoxicated. However, you may face difficulties if the driver can prove that you willingly rode in the car as a passenger, knowing the driver was drunk. A person who knowingly rides as a passenger with a drunk driver assumes some risk legally.
May I file a civil case against a drunk driver if the criminal case is still pending?
Yes, and it is best not to wait because there is a statute of limitations for these types of cases. However, the time when you must file a drunken driving case in PA is generally 2 years from the date when the accident occurred. Failing to file a lawsuit within this time may reduce the chances of getting compensation for your damages.