Your Options After a Drugged Driver Crash
Auto accidents can happen at any time and it does not matter how careful you are as a driver. All it takes is a chance encounter with a driver who is either drunk or has been taking a mind altering drug and you can end up in hospital.
Even worse, it could be you and the rest of your family. It’s hard to take in just what this could mean over the next few weeks.
Endless visits to the doctor or a hospital, surgeries, time off work or your business, looking after loved ones. And all this could be because someone was stupid and selfish enough to get behind the wheel after using drugs.
You can help yourself and your family if you make a just claim for compensation for any injuries caused by a drugged driver.
An experienced personal injury lawyer will be the best person to provide and practical legal help in this situation.
DUI and Drugged Driving – Just How Common Is It?
There are some alarming statistics that reveal just how common accidents caused by drugged drivers really are. Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) publish many of these statistics on their website.
One thing they show is that the use of drugs while driving is often linked to taking alcohol at the same time. Unfortunately, young drivers are most likely to be implicated in illegally driving when affected by drugs although they are by no means the only ones.
In 2013, a report by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration revealed that 9.9 million people admitted taking illegal drugs and driving across the country.
It is likely that this was a low estimate.
The FBI, in a 2014 report, revealed that 1.1 million drivers were arrested for using a narcotic or other illegal drug while driving in that year.
DUI is one of the most common causes of auto accidents according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and while alcohol use is more likely to be the cause rather than illegal or legal drugs, both are significant in causing serious injuries and fatalities on the nations’ highways. Drug use as a factor is responsible for around 15 – 20% as a percentage of DUI crashes.
The DUI incidence is not going down, partly because younger people have more disposable cash to spend on drugs and alcohol and are more mobile, making a combination of driving and drug use more deadly.
Even Marijuana Use Makes Auto Accidents More Likely
Marijuana legalization has become more common, with states such as Alaska, Colorado, Oregon, Washington and even Washington D.C. legalizing it for recreational use. Even if it is only for medical use, it is worth noting that the use of this drug when driving can increase the chance of having an accident by 25%, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration in a report on the use of cannabis.
What to Do if Hit by a Drugged Driver
Even if the drugged driver who hits you is arrested and convicted, it is not going to help you pay the bills if you have been seriously injured. You need the help of an experienced personal injury attorney who specializes in auto accidents.
The sooner you contact a suitable attorney the better. He or she will be able to assess your accident and injuries objectively and give you an opinion on whether a claim for compensation might be successful and how much to claim.
An attorney who takes up your case up will be a much better negotiator with the insurance company of the person at fault. This is your best chance of recovering the substantial cost of being hit by a negligent, drugged driver.