The Deadly, Paralyzing Effects of DWI Accidents
When a driver makes the decision to get behind the wheel drunk, not only does he put his own life in danger, but he puts put the lives of those around them in danger as well.
This is simply not acceptable. After witnessing 35 years’ worth of tragedy, we have seen our fair share of drunk driving accidents and their catastrophic outcomes. Victims’ lives are changed forever; in some cases, victims are left paralyzed and forced to face a lifetime of pain and suffering while the responsible party stumbles away unscathed.
Does this sound like justice to you?
Getting behind the wheel when you’re drunk is dangerous—period. Despite the fact that most of us already know this fact, thousands of people die in drunk driving accidents every year across the country.
Statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration give us a snapshot of the dangers caused by drunk driving. The numbers are from 2013, the latest year with complete statistics available:
- DWI accident fatalities: 10,076
- Driver deaths with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent or higher: 6,515 (65%). That amount of alcohol in the bloodstream is the legal standard for adult drunk driving.
- Passenger and sober driver deaths: 2,724 (27%) and 8,027
- Bystander and non-occupant deaths: 837 (8%)
- Child deaths as a result of drunk driving accidents: 200
- Number of drivers involved in fatal crashes with any amount of alcohol in their systems (BAC of at least 0.01 percent): 11,307
- Number of drivers involved in fatal crashes with a BAC of at least 0.08 percent: 9,498 (84% of total drivers with a BAC above 0.01 percent)
- Number of drivers involved in fatal crashes with a BAC of at least 0.15 percent: 6,341 (56% of total drivers with a BAC above 0.01 percent)
Any person with a BAC of 0.15 percent or above who gets behind the wheel immediately multiplies his risk of causing and dying in an accident by a factor of ten.
The Paralyzing Outcome
In addition to the risk of death, a DWI accident risks a variety of injuries from minor to severe. One of the most tragic of these consequences is paralysis being one of them. Paralysis is a very real risk for many DWI victims; it can affect almost any part of the body.
A brain or spinal cord injury is the most common cause of the three main forms of paralysis:
- Paraplegia. Paralysis that affects the mobility of the lower body (legs, hips, bladder, etc.).
- Quadriplegia. In some cases, paralysis can affect the majority of the body, making it impossible to move any extremities below the neck.
- Partial paralysis. Paralysis of a specific nerve that prevents mobility in a certain area. This can affect any part of the body.
When someone becomes paralyzed, they usually incur substantial medical expenses in treatment, surgery, and rehabilitation. There are also health complications associated with paralysis, such as bed sores, thrombosis, osteoporosis, frozen joints, and respiratory problems.
The Help That Only an Experienced Law Firm Can Provide
Personal injury lawsuits can be complicated. Proving 100% liability in court—even when the collision was obviously caused by a drunk driver—can be challenging. In addition, securing a fair recovery is much more difficult if the driver at fault was not insured or carried too little insurance.
However, nothing is impossible if you have the will to do it. This is why you need the help of a skilled car accident attorney to make sure your rights and recovery are handled properly. With over 35 years’ worth of experience, attorney Steve Lee can help you get justice and compensation for the loss a drunk driver took from you. Contact us today at 713-921-4171 or 1-800-232-3711 to see how we can help you and your family recover after a devastating drunk driving accident.