Most people recognize that driving is an inherently dangerous activity. It only takes a moment for a mistake or oversight to lead to severe, even fatal consequences. Accidents can occur under the best of circumstances, but there are certain scenarios in which a person increases their risk for a crash.
Choosing to drive while feeling distracted by other people or a mobile device is one such situation. Getting behind the wheel while fatigued or exhausted is another. Finally, impairment caused by drugs or alcohol could also substantially increase the risk of a crash.
Unfortunately, while most people understand that drugs and alcohol increase crash risk, there are still people everyday in Texas who get behind the wheel while impaired, putting others at increased risk.
People driving drunk may not realize they’ve had too much
One of the most perplexing issues caused by alcohol is the inability of someone under the influence to comprehend how the alcohol impacts them. A person who has had too much to drink may not actually feel drunk. They may believe that they are still fully capable of maintaining control of the vehicle and safely driving.
The end result is that people get behind the wheel after drinking in the belief that the alcohol won’t affect their abilities. For a number of these individuals, that belief proves false. They may miss a stop sign or simply fail to react quickly enough to sudden changes in traffic. The result of their impairment may be a massive collision that causes significant property damage, injuries or even fatalities.
Drugged driving is also a very serious concern
Illicit drug use often occurs on private property and not in public. However, people who have recently used illegal drugs can still choose to get in their car and drive on public roads. These individuals may not make the best decisions behind the wheel, which will potentially increase the risk of a crash. However, those who don’t do illegal drugs could still cause a drugged driving collision.
Many prescription medications and over-the-counter remedies can impair someone’s driving abilities. Cough and cold medicine, for example, can leave someone feeling light-headed or impact their ability to focus. Many prescription medications can also cause cognitive or even physical side effects that impact someone’s ability to safely drive. The best safety rule is to avoid driving after consuming anything that affects how you feel.
Those who wind up hurt or who lose a loved one in a crash caused by an impaired driver have legal rights. If you suspect that alcohol, prescription medication or illegal drugs played a role in a crash that has affected your life, discussing the accident with an experienced personal injury attorney is a good way to stand up for your rights and protect yourself from the financial aftermath of a crash.