A 30-year-old from Royal Palm Beach was recently sent to the hospital after officers concluded that he was driving under the influence and caused an accident.
Reports indicate that the driver was heading the wrong back down Okeechobee Boulevard just before 11:00 p.m. when the accident happened. He slammed head-on into an oncoming vehicle. The intoxicated driver was taken to St. Mary’s Medical center in critical condition. Luckily, the other driver involves escaped with less serious injuries.
Our West Palm Beach accident lawyers understand that these kinds of accidents are completely preventable. There is never a legitimate reason to get behind the wheel after consuming alcohol when there are so many other safe ways to get home. Not only are you running the risk of some jail time, but you’re also running the risk of injuring or killing yourself or someone else.
If you drink alcohol and drive you dramatically increase your chance of being in a crash. In addition, if you are pulled over and the officer asks you to take a blood, urine or breath test, you are required to comply. Florida has the “Implied Consent Law”. When you sign your driver’s license, you have agreed to take these tests upon request. Refusal to take any of these tests will result in an immediate suspension of your driver’s license for one year. If you refuse it a second time, you will face an 18 month suspension.
In 2010, there were close to 1,000 people who were convicted of drunk driving in Plam Beach. That’s 1,000 drivers who were irresponsible enough to put their own lives, and the lives of others, at risk. Miami Dade County was much worse off, seeing more than 2,220 drunk driving convictions in 2010.
According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV), there were close to 228,000 traffic accidents reported in the state of Florida in 2011. Of those accidents, there were close to 108,000 that were alcohol-related. In these accidents, there were nearly 850 fatal accidents, killing more than 900 people. In addition to these fatalities, there were another 8,260 injury accidents in which close to 12,000 people were injured.
As we said, there are ways around these dangers:
-If you have a close friend who is trying to get behind the wheel after drinking, try to use a soft, calm approach to convince them of another option. Suggest that he’s had too much to drink and it would be better to let someone else drive or to take a cab.
-Before heading out, choose a designated driver. Decide who’s going to be doing the driving, and make sure that person doesn’t drink any alcoholic beverages.
-If you suspect a person is driving drunk, stay clear of them and promptly call 911 to report the driver to law enforcement.
-If you’re impaired, use a taxi, call a sober friend or family member, or use public transportation so you are sure to get home safely.
If you have been involved in a drunk-driving accident, contact Freeman, Mallard, Gonzalez & Sharp to discuss your rights. Call us for a free consultation at 1-800-529-2368.
More Blog Entries:
MADD and West Palm Attorneys Supporting Victims’ Rights, South Florida Injury Lawyers Blog, August 5, 2012
MADD and the NFL Team Up to Prevent Drunk Driving-Related Teen Car Accidents in Hollywood and Elsewhere, South Florida Injury Lawyers Blog, December 9, 2011