Drugged Driving Accidents
Drunk driving has been considered dangerous for many years now and rightfully so. There are groups and organizations who fight against drunk driving on a daily basis, and most people are aware of the dangers associated with driving under the influence of alcohol. What many people do not know is that drugged driving, or driving under the influence of illegal substances or prescription medications, now contributes to more car crashes than drunk driving. In fact, a recent study showed that 43% of fatal collisions reported in 2015 involved drug use whereas 37% involved alcohol. If you have suffered harm in an auto accident caused by someone driving under the influence of drugs, call our Memphis drugged driving accident attorneys today for a free consultation on how we may be able to help you.Seeking Compensation for Your Injuries Caused by a Driver Under the Influence of Drugs
Drugged driving includes driving while under the influence of legal prescription and over-the-counter medications as well as illegal drugs such as cocaine, heroin, and marijuana, depending on the state. Even if a drug has been prescribed to the driver or can be purchased without a prescription, it may still be unsafe to take it before driving, as many medications cause drowsiness and other side effects that may make it difficult to operate a motor vehicle. Drugged drivers may exhibit slower reaction times or fall asleep while driving, similar to drunk drivers. The drugs or medications may also affect their concentration and decision-making abilities. For these reasons, drugged driving accidents can cause serious or fatal injuries.
Who is responsible for your damages if you have been injured in a drugged driving crash? If the driver of the other vehicle was under the influence of drugs, then more than likely he or she will be responsible for your losses. You must, however, prove that he or she was negligent with the assistance of a drugged driving accident attorney in Memphis or elsewhere. Tennessee law, for example, prohibits driving while “under the influence of any intoxicant, marijuana, controlled substance, controlled substance analogue, drug, substance affecting the central nervous system, or combination thereof that impairs the driver's ability to safely operate a motor vehicle by depriving the driver of the clearness of mind and control of oneself that the driver would otherwise possess.”
If the other driver received a traffic citation for the accident or was charged with driving while intoxicated (DWI), you may be able to proceed with your bodily injury claim under a theory of negligence per se. Negligence per se, or negligence as a matter of law, means that the defendant’s negligence is presumed by his or her violation of a safety law designed to protect you and members of the public. If the driver is charged, police may require him or her to submit to a toxicology test.
Unlike with alcohol, there is no breathalyzer or standard roadside test to detect most illegal narcotics or prescription medications. This means that the officer may not charge the other driver with driving while intoxicated even if he or she was in fact doing so. In that case, you may have to rely on the testimony of eyewitnesses or other evidence to show that the drugged driver was responsible for the accident. To prove negligence, you will generally need to show that the other driver breached a duty of care to you which caused the accident and you to suffer injuries and damages.
An experienced drugged driving accident lawyer in the Memphis area can work diligently to assert a convincing claim against the drugged driver so that you can get the compensation you need to be made whole from the accident. This includes following up with the criminal court on any citations or criminal charges the drugged driver may have received in order to help you assert a compelling negligence per se argument. If no citations were issued, your attorney will review the police report, scene photographs, eyewitness testimony, and other evidence to help you prove the drugged driver’s fault under a more general negligence theory.Discuss Your Drugged Driving Crash with a Memphis Attorney
If you have suffered physical harm in a drugged driving car accident, it is important that you consult with an experienced auto accident attorney who can assist you in your case every step of the way. Nahon, Saharovich & Trotz can handle the legal aspects of your case so that you can focus solely on your medical treatment and recovery. In more than 30 years of practice, our Memphis drugged driving accident lawyers have recovered more than $1.5 billion in compensation for our clients’ injuries. Contact us toll-free at 800-529-4004 for a free consultation today, or complete our online form. Our car and truck wreck lawyers represent those injured across Tennessee, Mississippi, Arkansas, Kentucky, and Missouri, including in Memphis, Nashville, Knoxville, Chattanooga, Jonesboro, Little Rock, Jackson, Meridian, Tupelo, Columbus, Grenada, Starkville, Oxford, Hayti, and Caruthersville. NST is the way to go.