Drunk driving is a huge irresponsible activity that many people engage in. Poor judgment and slowed reaction times make DUI drivers prone to accidents where they put themselves at risk and also to other innocent people out there.
It is not fair to suffer the consequences of a drunk driving accident when the only wrong we did was the bad luck of finding a drunk driver in their vehicle. Most of the time, we see wrecks due to drunk drivers, and ironically, the victims of this negligent action usually get the worst part of the injuries, while the drunk driver gets out with a few scratches.
If you were injured in a similar accident, you are entitled to ask for compensation to pay for your damages and losses. Get the help of a Yonkers drunk driving accident lawyer to represent your best interests.
The Ward Law Group has a team of legal professionals who have been helping drunk driving accident victims for many years now. Our DUI accident lawyers are real experts on the matter and have helped thousands of people to receive fair compensation for their injuries.
What is Drunk Driving?
Drunk driving, legally termed as driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while intoxicated (DWI), is a serious offense in the state of New York. It occurs when a person operates a vehicle while their ability to do so is impaired by the consumption of alcohol or drugs.
This impairment can lead to reduced motor skills, impaired judgment, and delayed reaction times, which significantly increase the risk of accidents on the road.
In New York, as in many other states, the legal BAC limit for operating a motor vehicle is 0.08%. This means that if a person's blood alcohol concentration measures at or above this level, they are legally intoxicated and can be charged with a DUI or DWI.
For commercial drivers, the limit is lower at 0.04%, while for drivers under 21, a BAC of 0.02% or higher can result in legal consequences.
Types of Alcohol Tests
Law enforcement officers use various methods to determine a driver's BAC, ensuring they have accurate evidence to support any charges brought against them. The most common tests include:
This portable device measures the alcohol content in a person's breath, providing a quick and convenient way for officers to estimate BAC levels. It's often the first test administered during a traffic stop.
It is considered one of the most accurate methods; a blood test directly measures the alcohol concentration in a person's bloodstream. It is typically conducted at a medical facility after an arrest.
Field Sobriety Tests:
These are a series of physical and cognitive tasks designed to assess a driver's level of impairment. Common tests include the Walk and Turn, One-Leg Stand, and Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus. While subjective, the results of these tests can be used as evidence in court.
Drunk Driving Statistics in Yonkers
Drunk driving is no longer the leading cause of vehicular fatalities in the United States. That is a fact; however, there still are cases where drunk driving causes fatal or nonfatal accidents.
Just in July 2023, 160 transit accidents out of 7859 took place because of DUI drivers. Nowadays, there are other causes of fatal accidents, such as reckless driving and distracted driving, that have the highest statistics of transit accidents.
Types of Injuries in Drunk Driving Accidents
Drunk driving accidents can result in a wide range of injuries due to the force and impact involved. The type and severity of injuries often depend on the specific circumstances of the collision. Here are some common injuries individuals may sustain:
Head and Brain Injuries
In accidents where vehicles collide head-on or at high speeds, occupants can experience traumatic head injuries. These can range from concussions and contusions to more severe traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). TBIs may have long-lasting effects on cognitive functions, memory, and overall quality of life.
Spinal Cord Injuries
Rear-end collisions, a frequent occurrence in drunk driving accidents, can lead to spinal cord injuries. These injuries can result in paralysis or significant impairment in motor function. Victims may face challenges in mobility, self-care, and daily activities.
Whiplash and Neck Injuries
Whiplash is a common injury when a vehicle is struck from behind. It occurs due to the sudden acceleration-deceleration forces on the neck. Victims may experience pain, stiffness, and restricted movement, which can persist for an extended period.
Broken Bones and Fractures
Collisions involving side impacts or rollovers can lead to fractures and broken bones. These injuries can range from minor to more severe compound fractures, necessitating surgery, rehabilitation, and long-term care.
Blunt force trauma from any type of collision can cause internal injuries. These can include injuries to the organs such as the liver, spleen, and kidneys. Internal injuries may not be immediately apparent, making prompt medical attention crucial.
Cuts, Bruises, and Soft Tissue Injuries
These injuries can occur in any collision and may seem less severe initially. However, they can lead to significant pain, discomfort, and potential complications if not treated promptly and adequately.
Emotional and Psychological Trauma
In addition to physical injuries, victims of drunk driving accidents often experience emotional and psychological trauma. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, and depression are common responses to the harrowing experience of a severe accident.
New York DUI/DWI Laws and Penalties
Driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while intoxicated (DWI) in New York is a serious offense with strict legal consequences. Understanding the laws and penalties associated with DUI/DWI is crucial for individuals and their families.
|VIOLATION||MANDATORY FINE||MAXIMUM JAIL TERM||MANDATORY DRIVER LICENSE ACTION|
|Aggravated Driving While Intoxicated (AGG DWI)||$1,000 - $2,500||1 year||Revoked for at least one year|
|Second AGG DWI in 10 years (E felony)||$1,000 - $5,000||4 years||Revoked for at least 18 months|
|Third AGG DWI in 10 years (D felony)||$2,000 - $10,000||7 years||Revoked for at least 18 months|
|Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) or Driving While Impaired by a Drug (DWAI-Drug)||$500 - $1,000||1 year||Revoked for at least six months|
|Second DWI or DWAI-Drug violation in 10 years (E felony)||$1,000 - $5,000||4 years||Revoked for at least one year|
|Third DWI or DWAI-Drug violation in 10 years (D felony)||$2,000 - $10,000||7 years||Revoked for at least one year|
|Driving While Ability Impaired by a Combination of Alcohol/Drugs (DWAI-Combination)||$500 - $1,000||1 year||Revoked for at least six months|
|Second DWAI-Combination in 10 years (E felony)||$1,000 - $5,000||4 years||Revoked for at least one year|
|Third DWAI-Combination in 10 years (D felony)||$2,000 - $10,000||7 years||Revoked for at least one year|
|Driving While Ability Impaired by Alcohol (DWAI)||$300 - $500||15 days||Suspended for 90 days|
|Second DWAI violation in 5 years||$500 - $750||30 days||Revoked for at least six months|
|Third or subsequent DWAI within 10 years (Misdemeanor)||$750 - $1,500||180 days||Revoked for at least six months|
|Zero Tolerance Law||$125 civil penalty and $100 fee to terminate suspension||None||Suspended for six months|
|Second Zero Tolerance Law||$125 civil penalty and $100 re-application fee||None||Revoked for one year or until age 21|
|Chemical Test Refusal||$500 civil penalty ($550 for commercial drivers)||None||Revoked for at least one year, 18 months for commercial drivers.|
|Chemical Test Refusal within five years of a previous DWI-related charge/Chemical Test Refusal||$750 civil penalty||None||Revoked for at least 18 months, one year, or until age 21 for drivers under age 21, permanent CDL revocation for commercial drivers.|
|Chemical Test Refusal - Zero Tolerance Law||$300 civil penalty and $100 re-application fee||None||Revoked for at least one year.|
|Chemical Test Refusal - Second or subsequent Zero Tolerance Law||$750 civil penalty and $100 re-application fee||None||Revoked for at least one year.|
|Driving Under the Influence (Out-of-State)||N/A||N/A||Revoked for at least 90 days. If less than 21 years of age, revoked at least one year.|
|Driving Under the Influence (Out-of State) with any previous alcohol-drug violation||N/A||N/A||Revoked for at least 90 days (longer term with certain prior offenses). If less than 21, revoked at least one year or until age 21 (longest term).|
Immediate Steps After a Drunk Driving Accident
After a transit accident, you may feel confused and may not feel immediate pain due to the adrenaline of the moment. The best advice you can take whenever these accidents occur is to seek medical assistance as soon as possible.
It is going to help you if you have a noticeable injury. It also will help you to have a backup that you had the accident and resulted in being injured by it. Once you are out of danger, you should call law enforcement to notify them about the accident.
A police accident report must be done, and you have to make sure your name is in it, as well as all the details of the accident. Later on, the expert crew that will study the accident scene will confirm what you have provided to the officers and determine who was at fault.
After the report is done, you should revise your legal options. Call your drunk driving accident lawyer in Yonkers to check your case, and they will tell you how to act. Besides that, they will conduct an investigation to gather all the evidence you need to prove the drunk driver is liable for your injuries.
We have to remember that New York is a No-Fault state, which means that the first place where you should receive compensation is through your car insurance. Your Yonkers drunk driving attorney will get in touch with them and make sure you receive the full coverage that you paid for.
They will also make sure to negotiate with the drunk driver's insurance company to get compensation for their bodily injury coverage. These companies are well-trained to retain the maximum coverage and let you think you shouldn’t receive what you deserve.
After you have received compensation from insurance companies, if the damage you receive is considered a serious injury, then you can file a personal injury lawsuit to ask for other types of damages, such as pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life, among others.
A representation in court of one of the finest drunk driver accident attorneys in Yonkers will make sure your rights are being respected.
Yonkers Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer at The Ward Law Group
We have represented thousands of clients in the past 12 years of existence of The Ward Law Group P.L. However, our lawyers have up to 25 years of experience defending victims of transit accidents.
Over the years, The Ward Law Group has built a solid reputation of success and commitment to our clients. Multi-million dollars in settlements that we have won on behalf of our represented clients have provided them with relief in their finances.
We understand the pain and frustration that drunk driving accident victims deal with. Therefore, we want to be there when you need us—always encouraging citizens regarding their rights and how to defend themselves. We can back you up if you feel that you are not being treated fairly.
Call us at 855-DOLOR-55 for a free consultation of your case, and one of our DUI accident lawyers will answer any questions you may have.