Drunk drivers are one of the most dangerous drivers on the road and unfortunately many people still choose to drink and drive. The tragedy in this is that serious injuries can take place as well as fatalities and those collisions could have been prevented if the driver had decided to refrain from getting in their car. In the age of ride sharing options like Uber and Lyft, there is no excuse to get behind the wheel if you have had too much to drink. Despite numerous tragedies, the number of people charged with impaired driving, whether by alcohol or drugs, continues to rise annually. In 2019 alone, York Region Police laid more than 1,700 impaired-related criminal driving charges.
Recognizing Drunk Driving on the Road
Although we imagine that most drunk driving cases happen late at night after consuming too many drinks at a bar or party, the reality is that a driver can be under the influence of alcohol at any time.
Some of the signs to watch out for include:
- Swerving or inability to stay in one lane;
- Speeding or driving very slowly;
- General reckless driving;
- Sudden unpredictable movements (like braking suddenly, for no apparent reason);
- Driving on the wrong side of the road;
- Failure to turn on headlights;
- Disobeying traffic laws (running a red light, failing to stop at a stop sign).
What to Do if You Spot a Drunk Driver
If you suspect that a car on the road is being operated by a person who is under the influence of drugs or alcohol, the main objective is to keep yourself safe while finding a way to get them off the road. To report a drunk driver, you need to call 911 as soon as possible either by using your hands free or you will need to pull over when it safe to do so and make the call. Let the operator know you want to report a suspected drunk driver. Give them the exact location of the vehicle and try to be as specific as possible. Your call to report a drunk driver could end up saving lives and preventing a serious accident.
Steps to Take Immediately After a Drunk Driving Collision
Unfortunately, many innocent drivers are seriously injured by an impaired driver. If you find yourself involved in a motor vehicle accident that involves an impaired driver, please keep in mind the following tips.
- Call 911 when it is safe to do so.
- Do not attempt to confront a drunk driver. Make mental notes about the driver’s behavior so that you can report this to the police officer.
- Do not place yourself or anyone else in harm’s way to take photographs of an accident scene.
- Do not admit fault or discuss the cause of the accident with anyone other than the police officer.
- Explain what happened before and after the collision to the police officer. If you noticed strange driving behaviors or other signs of intoxication, explain this to the officer.
- Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer.
There are simple steps you can take to avoid driving while impaired simply by having a plan to get home safely. Have a designated driver, use public transit, call a friend or family member for a ride, or call a taxi or a ride share. There is no excuse.
At Iacobelli Law Firm, we have extensive experience representing clients who have been harmed by drunk drivers and we realize how difficult and life-changing it can be for you. We are a dedicated Ontario Personal Injury Law Firm that provides compassionate and competent legal counsel and we offer a FREE Consultation so please feel free to call us at 1-866-234-6093. We are honored to serve our clients and our community.
Andrew Iacobelli is an experienced personal injury lawyer who established Iacobelli Law Firm with offices located in Ontario, Canada as well as offices in Florida, U.S.A. Andrew restricts his practice to the representation of personal injury victims in claims involving serious injuries and wrongful death.