Mothers against Drunk Driving (MADD) is a non-profit organization that has been essential in raising the national drinking age to 21-years-of-age and increasing penalties for drunk driving. According to a recent news feature from CBS, MADD, along with the help of several South Florida families who are all victims of drunk driving accidents, is working to raise awareness of drunk driving and drugged driving this holiday season.
One victim interviewed in the article discusses how a drunk driver hit them and literally drove through their car. She described the drunk driving accident, which is something she will never forget, by saying the drunk driver was traveling in excess of 100 mph in a bus-only lane when the crash occurred. Her 13-year-old sister was killed in this fatal drunk driving crash. Victim’s mother is pleading with anyone who will listen to designate a driver who will agree to remain sober to prevent an accident like this one from occurring again.
Another family member is urging people not have a few drinks and then get behind the wheel. As she says, even if you are within the legal limit of .08 grams per hundred milliliters of blood, it does not mean it is safe for you drive. To demonstrate this, police set up a demonstration to show how difficult it is for people to function even when they are at or below the legal limit.
As our drunk driving accident attorneys in Boston can explain, if the at-fault driver is convicted of drunk driving, this can be used to prove negligence in a car accident lawsuit. However, being under the legal limit does not mean at-fault driver was not negligent. As the family member interviewed in the article discussed, any level of impairment can make it virtually impossible to operate a car in a safe manner.
This is because driving a car is what is known as a divided attention task that requires drivers to make simultaneous mental calculations and physical movements in a split second to avoid accidents. While some accidents involve a drunk driver swerving all over the road into oncoming traffic, many alcohol-related crashes involve a loss of focus for a very short period of time. An example of this can be seen in many rear end collisions.
This concept of driving as a divided attention task comes from years of research by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). NHTSA has used this research to develop tests for officers to perform when assessing if a driver is intoxicated. This goes far beyond the three Standardized Field Sobriety Tests (SFSTs) with which most people are familiar. For example, when an officer asks a suspected drunk driver for his or her driver’s license and proof of insurance, the officer is trained to ask distracting questions between being handed the documents to see if the suspect can perform this task with divided attention.
An experienced drunk driving accident lawyer will be able review the police reports (known as a 1:1 in Boston) to gather evidence, which can help to prove your case.
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:
DUI Accident Blamed for Death of Pedestrian in Dorchester, Boston Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Blog, December 10, 2013