No one heads out on the road expecting to get into a car wreck with a drunk driver. Even minor Houston fender benders can create problems in our lives. It is this same surprising nature that makes it virtually impossible to be fully prepared for a DWI car accident. If one should happen, having some foreknowledge can be helpful.
For instance, there are tons of mistakes that we unknowingly make in the aftermath of a car accident. We’ve listed some of the more common ones below.
Failure to file a police report
Typically seen in drunk driving related fender benders, the failure to file a police report can hurt us physically and financially – especially since many issues (medical and vehicular) don’t always show up immediately after a car accident. Once the Houston Police Department has arrived on the scene, make sure they get the names and address of any witnesses.
If the officer determines that the other party is at fault, this (along with the names of the valuable witnesses) will be in the report as well and can be of great assistance to you when filing an insurance claim.
Failure to Seek Medical Care
Just because you feel fine after a DWI car wreck doesn’t mean that you should forego emergency care. In fact, you should get a complete medical exam immediately (or as soon as possible) after the accident. Sometimes, injuries (like whiplash) don’t show up until a few days after the accident, getting documentation ensures that undiagnosed medical injuries don’t negatively influence your car accident settlement case.
Failure of Tact
Another common mistake people make after a car accident is talking to the other party’s insurance company. This is a trap, not a requirement – as many have come to believe. You have to remember that the other driver’s insurance company does not want to give you any money, even if you are innocent. It is their goal to find small cracks in what you say and assign blame to you so they can avoid their responsibility.
According to the CDC, someone is killed as a result of alcohol-impaired driving every 50 minutes or so. These statistics perfectly illustrate the numbers of drunk drivers on the roads today. While drunk drivers are a danger to themselves, you are also at risk when using the same road as a person who driving driving or DWI. Below are tips on how to avoid drunk drivers while limited your exposure to the risk they pose.
Buckle Your Seatbelt
The first defense against drunk drivers is using your seatbelt. If you happen to see an impaired driver ahead of you, make sure that everyone in your car is buckled up in case there is a crash. Furthermore, having your seatbelt on can reduce injuries in the unfortunate event that you or a loved one is in a vehicle that’s involved in a wreck.
Keep a Generous Following Distance
Staying a safe distance away from drivers you suspect are drunk is a good strategy to avoid intoxicated drivers on the road in Houston. Never try to overtake the motorist who is driving while intoxicated. Instead, keep a generous following distance between you and the driver so that you have an eye on his or her erratic behavior. Apart from just keeping your distance, be your brother’s keeper and call local law enforcement to come in and pull the driver off the road. After all, an arrested for drunk driving is one thing, but criminal charges related to intoxication manslaughter is a different matter altogether.
Avoid Late Driving
During the holiday season, celebrations usually involve people becoming intoxicated before driving home late at night. Therefore, your best remedy is staying at home in the evenings to avoid running into such individuals on the road. If possible, stay off the roads on drinking holidays and you will have the best chance of avoiding an encounter with a drunk driving. Most Texas DWI litigation trial lawyers in Houston will agree with this.
A drunk driver can ruin your day and even cause you to be hospitalized for a long time. They can even kill you. Therefore, you need to stay safe by watching out for such drivers and doing everything possible to avoid them. Even if you’re successful at avoiding a collision with an impaired motorist, do the public a favor and alert local law enforcement of their presence. Due to the nature and dangers posed by drunk drivers in Houston, we all have a responsibility to do our part to keep our roads safe.