According to the CDC, almost 10,000 people were killed in alcohol-impaired car accidents in 2014. The most tragic part of this statistic is that drivers who are not intoxicated are more likely to die in an alcohol-impaired accident than intoxicated drivers are.
Usually when an accident occurs, proving who was at fault is one of the most important parts of filing insurance claims and seeking injury compensation. When a drunk driving accident occurs, another important piece of the situation is proving that the accident did, in fact, involve alcohol impairment.
Here’s what you should do if you are in a crash with an intoxicated driver.
Get medical help.
Drunk accidents are often highly damaging. Before doing anything else, call 911 and get an ambulance on the scene. Even if you are not fatally wounded, there could very well be other injuries that need to be treated or injuries that have not appeared yet. Safety and well-being should be the first priority.
Get police on the scene.
You should also call for police to examine the crash scene. Especially in an accident involving intoxication, a police report is extremely important for proving your case and recovering compensation. Without a police report, it may be nearly impossible to show sufficient evidence that the other driver was intoxicated past a safe driving level.
In Texas, blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) tests are not required. However, they may be used at the discretion of the officer, and they are most commonly conducted when fatal injuries are involved. A BAC test might also be conducted on a deceased driver in the accident to determine if intoxication was involved.
Get info from those at the scene.
As with any other accident, you should get the other driver’s insurance information if you are able to do so. If not, at least get their license plate number.
You will also want names and contact information from witnesses so you can gather any reports of what they saw. Witness reports can be a key part of a drunk driving case.
Consult a knowledgeable attorney.
Any car accident is cause for consideration of an attorney. However, this is even more important in a drunk driving accident. In addition to the usual concerns after a car accident, you will want to be able to prove the driver’s intoxication and get just compensation for your situation. An attorney can help gather all the necessary evidence and advocate for you.