While you can control your own actions and not get behind the wheel after consuming alcohol, you cannot control what other motorists do. Unfortunately, many make the wrong decision of driving when intoxicated, which can significantly reduce their ability to drive safely. Slowed reaction time, poor judgment, inability to concentrate on more than one task, and reduced vision are some of the ways that drunk driving affects driving abilities and leads to catastrophic accidents. However, you can take steps to keep you and your family safe.
Top Signs That a Driver Is Drunk
You need to be aware of the signs that a driver is intoxicated so that you can watch for them when you are on the road. If you spot a driver exhibiting these warning signs, you should keep a safe distance from him and contact the police. In this way, you protect others on the road as well as yourself. Here are ways that you can identify a drunk driver:
- Veering into other lanes. Because of problems judging distances and drowsy driving, a drunk driver can veer into another traffic lane—sometimes causing a head-on collision. This can also lead the driver to suddenly overcorrect, which can cause an accident.
- Colliding with objects. Some drunk drivers will not see traffic signs, mailboxes, and other objects and crash into them because of reduced vision.
- Wide turns. The inability to judge distances can cause a drunk driver to make wide turns, which can lead to a head-on or side-impact wreck.
- Straddling a lane divider. To avoid crossing into another lane or veering off the road, drunk drivers often drive too close to the center lane line or other lane dividers.
- Driving under the speed limit. Some drunk drivers will compensate for their intoxication by driving too slowly—10 miles or more below the speed limit.
- Tailgating. Being drunk can impair a person’s judgment, which can cause him to speed and tailgate other drivers. This can be even more dangerous due to slowed reaction times and inability to judge distances.
- Headlights. Some drivers are so intoxicated that they do not realize that their headlights are not on, making it more challenging for them to see and to be seen by other drivers.
- Turn signals. If a driver is intoxicated, he may use the wrong turn signal, not use it at all, or forget to turn it off, making it more difficult for you to determine whether the driver intends to turn.
No matter how hard you try to avoid drunk drivers on the road, you could suffer injuries in an accident caused by a drunk driver. However, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries from the drunk driver. To learn about your legal options, schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced car accident attorneys. Call our office today to schedule your appointment.