Thousands of people are killed due to drunken driving accidents each year, and many states are continuing to crack down on DUI charges and laws. Police in many states are now able to pull drivers over simply for the suspicion of alcohol-impaired driving, and punishments are becoming increasingly severe.
Indicators that Alert Police of Possible Drunk Drivers
The following indicators commonly alert police officers that a vehicle’s driver may be under the influence of alcohol. Any of these factors may be a reason for an officer to pull over a driver to check for signs of alcohol use.
- The driver is straddling the lane marker or center line
- The driver is making wide radius turns
- The driver nearly hits an object or another vehicle
- The vehicle is weaving
- The driver is braking erratically, drifting, or swerving
- The driver is stopping without cause or driving too slowly
After an Accident
Despite these possible warning signs, drunken driving accidents do still occur and people are injured. After an auto accident has occurred, a driver who is suspected of being drunk will be the subject of a police investigation. The driver will likely undergo a field sobriety test and a breathalyzer to determine if his or her BAC (blood alcohol content) is higher than the legal limit in the state. If it is, the driver will be incarcerated and ultimately punished for these actions.
Charge and Release: In cases where there were no other injuries in the accident, it is likely that the suspect will stay in a jail’s holding cell until they are sober. They will typically be released on his or her own recognizance, on agreement to return, or on bail. Punishments may include a suspended license, mandated drug awareness classes, or a breathalyzer device being installed in their vehicle, but the exact punishment will depend on the driver’s history and accident circumstances.
Held Until Trial: If an accident injures, or unfortunately kills, another person, the driver may not be eligible for bail. The driver will likely be charged with some type of vehicular manslaughter or criminal negligence for their role in the accident, and often they will be subject to a civil suit to compensate for emotional damages and medical bills to the victims.
If you are in an accident with a drunk driver, seek out medical attention immediately. Contact emergency medical personnel and visit with a Snellville back pain doctor in order to receive prompt and adequate treatment for your injuries.