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Alleged Drunk Driver Flips Car Into River With Child Inside

The father of an 8-year-old boy from Massachusetts was able to run for help after a car accident that left them both in the Nashua River.

According to the Telegram & Gazette, the early-morning accident occurred after the boy’s father, who had just finished up drinking for more than 8 hours, hopped behind the wheel and didn’t see his son as a passenger (in the front seat of the vehicle). The father was arrested and later released on personal recognizance after he entered a not guilty plea.
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According to accident reports, the father ran over a sidewalk, sped across a driveway, slammed into a 12-inch barrier and plowed right through a guardrail at the edge of the river. His vehicle shot through the air and wound up on a sandbar in the middle of it all. The young boy ran for help, running nearly a mile home to alert his mother to call 9-1-1.

Our drunk driving car accident lawyers understand that intoxicated drivers are a public threat to everyone on our roadways, but they’re also a serious threat to themselves and to their friends and families. According to Mothers Against Drunk Driving, there were close to 10,000 people killed and another 350,000 injured in these kinds of accidents in 2011. It’s even worse when some of our youngest family members are involved.

In the state of Massachusetts, we follow Melanie’s Law (as of October of 2005). Under this law, lawmakers were able to create a new crime of Operating a Motor Vehicle Under the Influence of Alcohol With a Child 14 Years of Age or Younger in the Vehicle. This means that a driver can be charged with two crimes at once: 1.) OUI and 2.) Child Endangerment while OUI/DWI.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), car accidents continue to be the leading cause of death for children over the age of 1. As a matter of fact, one in four accident-related fatalities among child passengers under the age of 14 involves alcohol use.

If you’re busted for endangering a child in a drunk driving incident, you’re looking at some serious consequences. For a child endangerment conviction, you will spend between 90 days and 2 1/2 years in prison and you will also be slapped with a fine of anywhere from $1,000 to $5000. You will also lose your driver’s license for one year.

If you’re arrested a second time for drunk driving in the Massachusetts, you will be fined from $600 to $10,000. You’re also facing anywhere from 30 days to 2 1/2 years in prison and you will also have your driver’s license suspended for 2 years.

While you should never get behind the wheel after consuming alcohol, it’s even more important that you don’t do it with a child in your vehicle. These precious little ones rely on our responsible habits to keep them safe and alive. Don’t mess that up.

If you or a loved one was involved in a drunk driving accident in Massachusetts, call the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman for a free and confidential appointment — 1-888-367-2900.

More Blog Entries:

Cost of Massachusetts OUI Should Deter Drunk Drivers, Boston Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Blog, July 10, 2013

Mass. Trooper Hit by Alleged Drunk Driver, Boston Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Blog, July 7, 2013