Articles Posted in Drunk Driving Accidents

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Public education campaigns have focused for years on the importance of appointing a designated driver if there are plans to be out drinking. However, that concept appears to have been lost to a significant extent among teens and young adults when it comes to the use of drugs by drivers – an increasing threat to road safety.

A newly-released study published in the latest edition of Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs reveals that 33 percent of recent high school graduates reported riding with an impaired peer at some point in the last year, being slightly more likely to ride with a driver impaired by marijuana than a driver who was drunk. Researchers said the takeaway here is that while so much of our efforts have been laser-focused on alcohol-impaired driving, perhaps we need to shift our focus more to users of other substances.

While 20 percent of respondents said they had ridden at least one time with an alcohol-impaired driver, 23 percent said they had been a passenger at least once with a marijuana-impaired driver and 6 percent with a driver who was impaired by other illicit drugs (i.e., cocaine, opiates, amphetamines, LSD or ecstasy). Researchers also examined whether the impaired driver was a friend or relative about the same age, a little-known or unknown person about the same age or someone who was older. Results showed the risk of riding with an impaired driver was much higher for peer drivers than it was for older motorists. Continue reading →

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The family of a 16-year-old aspiring model in Texas has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against adult property owners of a deer camp and a group of teens.

According to news reports, the girl was killed in late July after being ejected from a utility task vehicle (UTV) during a 3 a.m. ride on the property. Authorities said the teens were consuming alcohol throughout the day and playing drinking games. They had been out riding earlier, and someone suggested they go out again in the middle of the night.

The operator of the UTV in which decedent was riding made a sharp turn at a fork in the road. This caused the vehicle to slide and roll, smacking the edge of a dirt road and pitching right. Decedent was ejected 20 feet from the vehicle, striking her head and body on the ground. Continue reading →

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In a case that holds relevance for drunk driving victims in Florida, a state surrounded by water, the Texas Supreme Court refused to apply federal maritime law to a drunk driving case involving a person who became intoxicated while aboard a boat.

Our Fort Lauderdale drunk driving accident lawyers are hopeful the impact of the decision in Schlumberger Tech. Corp. v. Arthey won’t be too great in Florida for two reasons. One, the decision by Texas’ highest court doesn’t have a direct impact on the determinations made in Florida courts. But perhaps more importantly in this case, Florida recognizes social host liability, whereas Texas does not.

The lack of social host liability laws in Texas was what led the plaintiffs to pursue this action the way they did.
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A family seeking to hold accountable the strip club that served alcohol to an already-drunk off-duty officer who then drove drunk, crashed and killed their beloved husband and father is confronting a major setback, following a recent decision by the Alabama Supreme Court.

Following the officer’s criminal conviction, the family of the minister he killed pursued civil action against both the officer, based on general negligence, and the strip club, via the state’s dram shop laws.

Broward County DUI injury lawyers note that dram shop laws vary from state-to-state, but the statutes in Alabama and Florida are comparable.
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A personal injury lawsuit stemming from a New Year’s Eve DUI crash has been settled for $1 million, according to the victim’s lawyers.

The 26-year-old victim suffered multiple fractured vertebrae in her back when the vehicle in which she was riding rolled over and struck a tree. The driver, now 31, had reportedly taken her eyes off the road for a moment to change the radio station. The vehicle drifted to the right, struck a tree stump and overturned. Tests later revealed the driver’s blood-alcohol content was almost twice the legal limit.

Of particular interest to our Deerfield Beach DUI injury lawyers was the fact that no one at the bar believed the driver to be intoxicated. According to witnesses, she wasn’t slurring her words. She wasn’t stumbling as she walked. She wasn’t being especially loud or boisterous – all things one might expect from someone who was heavily intoxicated.
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Anti-drunk driving advocacy groups tend to be united in the core common goal of slashing the number of deaths and injuries caused by impaired drivers.

But now, DUI injury attorneys in Fort Lauderdale note conflict brewing among various factions regarding how to best accomplish this goal.

On the one side is Mothers Against Drunk Driving and vendors of the ignition-interlock devices. The devices have been used by Florida courts for several years now. Florida Statute 316.193 is the provision of law that mandates the devices be installed on vehicles driven by individuals who have been twice-convicted of DUI.
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Nowhere in the country is it legal to sell booze to minors, and it’s certainly not legal for anyone – under 21 or otherwise – to get behind the wheel of a vehicle while intoxicated.

Yet it happens all the time, often resulting in serious injury or even death. As Vero Beach personal injury lawyers, the question we often ask in this cases, beyond the obvious fault of the drunken driver, is whether a third party may be liable for providing the alcohol in the first place.

Like most states, Florida has something called a “Dram Shop Act.” Florida Statute 768.125 allows for third-party liability in drunk driving cases if that third party unlawfully sold or furnished a minor alcohol or knowingly served alcohol to a person who is “habitually addicted” to alcohol.
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New Year’s Eve has long been notorious for parties and car accidents.

Everyone wants to have a memorable night and alcohol often plays a big part in the activities, as it does throughout the entire holiday season. However, safety is a must when participating in the festivities. Whether you’re staying in and celebrating with friends and family, or you’re traveling to a party or city bash, following a few safety tips will ensure that you see the clock strikes midnight, and safely ring in the New Year!

One of the biggest concerns of New Year’s is the risk for alcohol-related car accidents. Many people believe that New Year’s Eve is the night when the most drunken driving accidents occur but they are wrong; New Year’s Eve runs a distant second to the holiday that statistically has the largest number of drunk-driving fatalities — Thanksgiving. While New Year’s might not be ranked as number one, there are still hundreds who lose their life on this celebratory night because of irresponsible decisions.

Our Port St. Lucie personal injury attorneys understand that more than motorists need to be concerned with their safety on New Year’s. Pedestrians and bicyclists also need to be cautious of the travelers around them. Aware traveling may be your saving grace when it comes to dodging traffic.
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A couple from Palm Beach is looking for the compensation that they deserve, after a drunk driver slammed into their vehicle and fled the scene in a recent accident. According to The Palm Beach Post, the elderly couple isn’t just going after the driver, they’re also going after a local tavern, for allegedly over-serving the bar’s regulars.

Because the patrons were regulars and because they were at the bar for hours before the accident happened, some believe that the victims will win what they deserve. In the state of Florida, the dram shop law allows liability of establishments arising out of the sale of alcohol to obviously intoxicated persons or minors who subsequently cause death or injury to third parties as a result of alcohol-related crashes.

Our West Palm Beach injury attorneys know dram shop laws have been proved to reduce the risk of traffic collisions by reducing excessive and illegal consumption, both of which are common in alcohol-related accidents. In many states that have strict dram shop laws, “happy hours” are less common. But don’t think that the responsibility is being taken from the drinkers and placed onto the servers. Drivers and other parties are still held liable for damages. As drivers, we still have a moral responsibility to say when enough is enough and not to consume enough alcohol to endanger ourselves or other motorists on the road.
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Law enforcement officers throughout the state recently teamed up to encourage spring breakers, both local and from out of town, to safely celebrate their time away from work and school.

According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV), our beautiful beaches come with some serious risks, and unfortunately this time of year fuels poor decisions involving drugs and alcohol. Throughout the entire month of March, law enforcement officers will be out enforcing the state’s drinking laws and working to keep impaired drivers off of our roadways.

Our Vero Beach accident attorneys understand that spring break is a time to let loose a little bit, but there’s no letting loose from safety. Officials with the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) are asking drivers to think twice before getting behind the wheel under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Drunk and impaired driving not only puts the dangerous driver at risk, but it also compromises the safety of other innocent travelers along our roadways. Officials with the DHSMV are reminding drivers that the Sunshine State comes with some serious penalties for DUI. Not only do you risk jail time, but these charges, fees and fines can leave you with an empty wallet, too!

“Florida troopers do not tolerate impaired driving, so driver sober and drive safely,” said Col. David Brierton, FHP Director.

Officials with the Department of Business and Professional Regulation will be also working to enforce our state’s beverage laws, while focusing on the state’s drinking age. Officials are working diligently to make sure that no one under the legal drinking age is being sold alcohol.

Remember these laws and tips to help ensure a safe spring break:

-The legal drinking age in the state of Florida is 21. Anyone who is underage who has possession of alcohol can be cited and slapped with a second-degree misdemeanor. This can result is come costly fines and some other serious consequences.

-If you’re busted selling alcohol to or buying alcohol for anyone under the age of 21, you can also be slapped with a misdemeanor.

-Both passengers and drivers are prohibited from obtaining and open alcohol beverage in a vehicle — whether it’s stopped or in motion.

-Make sure you plan ahead. Before you crack open a cool one, make sure you’ve got a safe and sober way to get home. A taxi or a bus is a lot cheaper that getting busted for DUI.

-If you spot a friend or a family member who is under the influence with keys in their hand — snatch them. Don’t let anyone get behind the wheel after consuming alcohol.

-Keep an eye on teens during this time of the year. Make sure they have strict curfews. Know who they’re with and when they’re coming home. Your knowledge can help to keep them safe and out of harm’s way.

-Call *FHP (*347) on your cell phone to report someone who you believe is an impaired driver.
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