Every year, over 6 million car accidents occur in the United States, and 600,000 of these happen in New Jersey. There are many different factors that can lead to an automobile collision, but driving while impaired is one of the most common causes of collisions. While the number of impaired driving accidents has decreased over the past year, the statistics have risen again during the course of the COVID-19 pandemic. If you want to prevent the prevalence of these accidents, you should only get behind the wheel of a car when sober and mentally aware. To learn more about the statistics of drug-related car accidents in the United States, continue reading this blog. Otherwise, you can contact a Middlesex County, NJ Car Accident Attorney today for individualized legal counseling.
HOW OFTEN ARE CAR ACCIDENTS CAUSED BY DRUG USE?
More often than you might think. According to a recent study by the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, over 55% of drivers involved in car accidents had alcohol or drugs in their system. Sadly, impaired driving accidents are often more likely to lead to fatalities than other types of auto accidents. The same study also found that in fatal car collisions, 25% of drivers involved tested positive for marijuana in their system. 11% had a stimulant (like cocaine or methamphetamines) in their system, and 9% tested positive for opioids. Over a quarter of these accidents involved drivers who had two or more substances in their system. Driving while impaired is a national problem that we should all be aware of.
WHAT SHOULD I DO AFTER AN AUTO ACCIDENT CAUSED BY AN IMPAIRED DRIVER?
If the at-fault driver’s impairment is obvious, police officers who arrive on the scene will likely perform a breathalyzer test. The driver will more than likely be arrested if they were operating a vehicle with alcohol in their system, but they can still face arrest even if the breathalyzer shows no alcohol. The police will have to perform a urine or blood test to determine if the at-fault driver was impaired by drugs, since breathalyzers only show blood alcohol concentration.
The good news is that if the at-fault driver is found guilty of driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, there’s a good chance you’ll be able to recover compensation for your injuries. Though New Jersey is a no-fault state for car accidents, meaning your auto insurance will initially be responsible for your damages, you can file a personal injury claim against the impaired driver. Since they broke a law, you’ll have an easier time proving them guilty of negligence in court.
Have you recently been injured in a car accident caused by an impaired driver? You might want to speak with a personal injury attorney who can help you to determine your best options moving forward. Thankfully, our highly experienced law firm is on your side! Contact Stathis & Leonardis today for an initial consultation.