Each year, there are more than 10,000 people killed in vehicle crashes that are caused by a driver who is under the influence of alcohol. In Virginia, as in all states, if a person has a blood alcohol content of .08 percent or more, they are considered driving under the influence and can be arrested and charged with drunk driving.
The penalties for a drunk driving conviction are harsh and include loss of license, substantial fines, mandatory alcohol assessment with counseling if so determined, and alcohol education classes. Depending on how many drunk driving convictions the person has, there may even be mandatory jail time.
Despite the known dangers and consequences, people continue to drink and drive. Many of those drivers are under the misconception that if they only have one or two drinks, they can still safely drive. But multiple studies have proven that even someone who has a BAC under .08 percent can still be putting themselves and other commuters at serious risk of being injured or killed in a crash.
The effects that alcohol has on a driver who is over the legal limit are well-known. The drunker a driver is, the more their ability to comprehend and react to the road around them is reduced.
But even the ability of a driver with a BAC of between .01 and .07 percent is reduced compared to no alcohol. A buzzed driver also experiences a delay in reaction time, loss of judgment, and an effect on coordination. In fact, studies show that a buzzed driver has a 46 percent higher risk of causing a car accident than a driver with .0 percent BAC.
Contact a Virginia Accident Attorney for Assistance
If you have suffered injuries in an alcohol-related crash, contact a skilled Virginia car accident attorney to discuss what legal recourse you may have against the drunk driver for the pain and losses you have suffered. The legal team at Shapiro & Appleton has successfully represented many clients who were injured in alcohol-related accidents and will fight to get you the financial compensation you deserve.
Families who have lost loved ones in drunk driving crashes should consider contacting a Virginia wrongful death attorney to discuss what legal recourse they may have for their pain and loss. Although nothing will ever make up for the death of a DUI accident victim, Virginia law allows families to seek justice in civil court under the wrongful death statute. This is separate from any criminal charges the driver may be facing.