National Drugged and Drunk Driving Prevention Month

National Drugged and Drunk Driving Prevention Month

December was chosen as National Drunk and Drugged Driving Prevention Month, largely due to the fact that more drivers are likely to take the wheel when impaired around the holiday season. It only takes one poor decision to cause an accident resulting in injury or death. However, cognitive impairment due to intoxication is not a valid defense when the actions of the driver put other road users or pedestrians at risk.

Impaired Driving

National Impaired Driving Prevention Month is a federally-recognized push to help raise awareness about the dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Statistically, drunk driving accidents result in a death every 50 minutes on average. Over the past half a century efforts to prevent impaired driving have proven successful. In the years 2016 and 2017, there are worrying signs that deaths from impaired driving are once again on an upward trend.

While each federal administration may take a different approach to addressing the issue, all agree that the number of injuries and deaths resulting from impaired driving is an important subject to address, at a time when more Americans are likely to make that fateful decision to drive while impaired. There are various programs designed to educate and help prevent DWIs. Programs that apply specifically to Texas can be found via the official DMV website.

Long Term Injuries

Injuries from a serious motor vehicle accident are often a life sentence. You may no longer have the physical or mental capacity to remain in your chosen occupation. Even short-term loss of earnings will impact on your ability to pay your bills and medical costs. Some patients may require ongoing treatment or care, resulting in financial strain on the entire family unit.

Traumatic brain injuries (TBI) can cause behavioral changes, which impact interpersonal relationships. Depression, anxiety, and outbursts of aggression are not uncommon among victims of a motor vehicle accident. In many cases, familial relationships suffer due to the stresses associated with a loved one’s debilitating injury. The victim of the accident, and any affected family members may require extensive counseling in order to cope with the challenges they will face.

Wrongful Death

Wrongful deaths caused by an impaired driver are more complex, because they potentially involve both a criminal and civil case. As a bereaved family member, you will understandably wish to seek answers for your loss. The primary aim of National Drunk and Drugged Driving Prevention Month is to highlight and raise awareness of the potentially life-altering consequences for everyone involved, when a driver makes the decision to drive under the influence.

You can never replace a loved one, but seeking compensation can help you cope with the potential financial burdens you are likely to face. Those who are left behind endure enough suffering, which is why Greening Law is here to act as your advocate if you have lost a child, partner or spouse in a drunk or drugged driving incident. We will fight on your behalf to win you fair compensation, so you can take some comfort in the fact that you and your family are financially secure. Your voice is one among many and we are here to help ensure that you are heard.

Pursuing Compensation

When you seek compensation for your injuries or the loss of a loved one, you are doing more than simply pursuing a financial reward. Just as businesses are held to a higher standard through litigation for negligence, bringing private citizens to account does have an impact on the behavior of others. A large part of impaired driving prevention involves ensuring those who take the risk are brought to justice, and cases are highlighted to the public.

You have a right to seek compensation for your injuries, damage to your property, or a wrongful death. As the injured party, you do not deserve to suffer further punishment when criminal charges against an impaired driver are not equal to the suffering you have endured. If bringing a case for compensation against an impaired driver makes that person think twice before ever again driving under the influence, you have made the right choice.

We fight the legal battle, so you have time for healing and renewal after an accident caused by an impaired driver. Contact Greening Law today if you have suffered injury or lost someone in a drunk or drugged driving accident. Our team will provide compassion and understanding throughout every stage of your case.

New Texas Drunk Driving Law: First-Time DWI Offenders Now Need Ignition Interlocks to Stay on the Road

New Texas Drunk Driving Law

New Texas Drunk Driving Law First-Time DWI Offenders Now Need Ignition Interlocks to Stay on the Road. A new Texas law means that even first-time DWI offenders in Texas may find themselves installing ignition interlock devices on their cars if they want to keep driving.

We all know that we shouldn’t drink and drive and we all know that the consequences can be tragic. Every year, the lives of tens of thousands of Texans are catastrophically impacted by drunk driving. In 2013 alone, according to MADD:

  • 1,337 people were killed in drunk driving incidents in Texas, the most in the nation
  • 15,687 people were injured in alcohol-related crashes on Texas’ roads and highways
  • There were 25,479 alcohol-related accidents in the state
  • 99,195 people were arrested for DWI
  • 71,030 people were convicted for DWI

Many of those drivers charged or convicted for DWI were likely facing such charges for the first time. If no one was injured or killed, the penalties they faced for a first-offense DWI may not necessarily have included jail time, though the other consequences and the stain on their standing and reputation were hardly inconsequential.

But the injuries and deaths that can be caused by drunk driving are the same whether the driver has never faced DWI charges before or whether they have been convicted multiple times. That’s why even first-time offenders face a driver’s license suspension upon arrest.

As of September 1, 2015, however, those arrested for a first-offense Texas DWI can continue to drive so long as they install an ignition interlock device on any vehicle they drive. The new law requires first-time DWI offenders whose blood alcohol content was under 0.15 percent to install these Breathalyzer-like devices in their cars if they apply to drive during the license suspension period after their arrest. The option is not available if the driver’s BAC was above 0.15 percent.

Previously, Texas law only required the installation of ignition interlocks for repeat DWI offenders who applied to drive after their second or subsequent arrest for DWI.

While it may seem like giving those suspected of DWI another way to get back on the road would increase the chances of more drunk driving incidents, MADD, which actively pushed for the new law, believes that requiring the devices will actually decrease the likelihood of new incidents because so many people whose licenses had been suspended were driving anyway. Now, the hope is that those wishing to stay on the road legally will opt for the interlocks which will keep their car from starting if their BAC is 0.08 or above. Let’s hope so.

If you’ve been injured or have lost a loved one in a car accident, whether caused by a drunk driver or not, you have rights which may include recovering compensation. At Greening Law, P.C. in Dallas, we are dedicated to protecting the rights and futures of those whose lives have been turned upside down due to injuries caused by others. Pease give us a call at (972) 934-8900 or fill out our online form to discuss your situation. We look forward to assisting you.