Guidelines to Secure a Better Future Following a DWI Collision
A DWI accident often leads to serious or life-threatening injuries. But there are other considerations besides the physical injuries. While any type of accident can be stressful, DWI collisions are especially tense because they often could have been avoided. Therefore, in addition to painful injuries, costly repairs, and emotional trauma, guilt can set in and have a serious toll on your health.
Learning From Others’ Mistakes
DWIs are all too common, as are hit-and-run accidents as a result of drivers not fully understanding the risks of driving while impaired. It’s hard for people to imagine what their lives would be like following a collision, if they’ve never experienced it for themselves. This is how Matthew Cordie and his viral YouTube confession became a teaching tool for all motorists.
In September 2013, Cordie, then 22 years old, posted a video confession to YouTube. The video served as a confession to a June 22, 2013 accident that left one man, 61-year-old Vincent Canzani, dead and police wondering who was to blame. In the video, Cordie admits to driving drunk and killing Canzani. Within days of the video’s release, the confession went viral and Cordie was in police custody. He was charged with aggravated vehicular homicide and operating a vehicle while impaired. He was found guilty of both charges, and sentenced to a six-and-a-half year prison sentence and a lifetime suspension of his driver’s license.
For his part, Cordie seems not only contrite, but also focused on bringing a serious problem to light—that of rampant, casual alcohol and substance abuse. His public confession is meant to show others the seriousness of driving while intoxicated while also exposing the risks of continuing to drive impaired even though you may never have been caught.
Canzani’s ex-wife commended Cordie’s sincerity, and other drunk driving victims wish that other potential drunk drivers will take Cordie’s remorse and ownership to heart as it is something that they wished they could have received after their accidents.
Doing the Right Thing
Whether you’re a victim or instigator of a DWI accident, doing the right things immediately afterward could decide your future. To prevent further injuries, secure injury claim rights, and avoid legal prosecution, there are several actions you must take. These include the following:
- Securing the scene. Immediately call 911 while assessing your injuries and making sure all others involved are safe.
- Staying put. Remain at the scene of the accident until authorities arrive and have questioned you. In the event that you’re injured, make sure the police have your information before going to the hospital.
- Protecting your rights. Refrain from admitting fault or apologizing for the accident. Although you may have collided into the other person, his actions may have caused the incident if he was negligently drunk. Police officers will likely administer a series of tests if the suspect drunk driving caused the accident. When a DWI accident results in injuries, usually the driver will be held in custody.
- Securing documentation. Obtain the other driver’s information (name, address, driver license number, etc.) for your records. This is essential for pursuing an injury claim.
- Acquiring legal representation. Once you are free to go home or to the hospital your next step would be to seek legal representation. If you sustained serious injuries, a DWI accident can present unique challenges that will require skilled legal counsel.
Securing a Better Future
Personal injury suits can be complicated. Even if you clearly were not responsible for the crash—and it obviously was caused by a drunk driver—proving this in court can be challenging. In addition, there could be difficulties with the insurance companies or even worse problems if the driver at fault was not insured.
However, nothing is impossible if you have the will to do it. If you have sustained injuries or had a loved one killed by a drunk driver, you can fight for compensation to begin the recovery process. For help with your claim, please contact attorney Steve Lee today at 713-921-4171 or 800-232-3711.