When you get behind the wheel to drive anywhere in Delaware, you can reasonably expect other motorists with whom you share the road to obey traffic laws. As a safe and cautious driver, you would normally expect other drivers to exhibit similar caution to help avoid collisions. Sadly, many drivers disregard traffic laws and make irresponsible decisions to consume alcohol before operating a vehicle.
Alcohol affects every person differently. You might know someone who is known for not being able to “hold his or her liquor,” which is another way of saying that he or she shows signs of intoxication after a drink or two. You might also know someone who claims to be able to drink numerous alcoholic beverages “without feeling it.” People in the latter group become a menace to the road when they choose to drive because they think they’re unaffected by alcohol.
Alcohol often causes three types of impairment
In Delaware, if your blood alcohol content (BAC) level is .08 or higher, you are prohibited from operating a motor vehicle. Even before reaching this BAC level, however, the impairments shown in the following list may be present:
- Object fixation: Alcohol can affect the muscles that help you to move your eyes and can impair your ability to do so, causing you to stare at a single object or location longer than usual.
- Light sensitivity and inability to identify contrast: Alcohol consumption can make it difficult for you to see the contrast, especially if a road is dimly lit or overly bright, which can have disastrous results, especially if you think you see a lamp post or road sign, but it’s really a person in the road.
- Delayed motor skills: Alcohol can slow your reaction time or cause you to have a lack of control over your movements, such as missing the brake pedal when you try to apply it with your foot.
These are merely several of many ways that alcohol can cause cognitive or physical impairment in a person’s body. The problem is that you have no way of knowing if a nearby driver has been drinking before getting behind the wheel or while driving.
Getting hit by a drunk driver has tragic results
Many Delaware travelers have died after being struck by drunk drivers on the road. If you survive a collision, you might suffer severe injuries, including a traumatic brain injury, whiplash, broken bones or other conditions that could cause you to need surgery, spend time in a hospital or require a lot of time off work during recovery.
Watching medical bills pile up as you strive to heal in the aftermath of a car accident intensifies stress. Many recovering victims choose to seek compensation for damages against the drunk drivers deemed responsible for their injuries as a way of offsetting expenses associated with the incidents.