While all motor vehicle accidents are unfortunate, our lawyers are especially saddened when a collision takes the life of a child or teenager. These individuals would have had their whole lives ahead of them to live and opportunities to seize as they grow into adults. Unfortunately, lives are often cut short way too soon due to the negligence of other drivers on the road.
This past Tuesday, an Illinois family had to suffer the loss of a young loved one. In the morning of January 7th, a pickup truck skidded off the blacktop road and turned on its side and partially ejected an 18-year-old passenger victim from the vehicle, according to the CarmiTimes. The coroner pronounced this victim dead at the scene.
The driver has been jailed in connection with the crash, pending formal charges. The preliminary charges are DUI, illegal consumption by a minor (the driver is 20 years old), driving with a suspended license, unlawful sale/gift/delivery of alcohol to a person under the age of 21, and obstructing a police officer. This is not the first time the driver was cited for such violations.
According to the 2013 Illinois DUI Fact Book published by the Illinois Secretary of State, “driving under the influence” is defined as operating a motor vehicle while impaired by alcohol, drugs, or other intoxicating substances. Impaired drivers unfortunately contribute to a large number of fatalities from motor vehicle accidents. In 2011, 323 people were killed in alcohol-related crashes, which was 35% of the 918 total crash fatalities.
Driving under the influence is not only negligent, as it carelessly and recklessly endangers the life and safety of others on the road, but it is criminal. It is illegal to drive after consuming an amount of alcohol that places one’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) at or above .08. This is the number at which a person is considered intoxicated. Consuming alcohol at or above this amount impairs one’s ability to function well and react normally, especially when behind the wheel of a car. Furthermore, the legal age for consuming alcohol is 21 throughout the U.S., and drinking underage is an endangerment to the individual and others, especially behind the wheel. The Illinois Secretary of State also notes that the average DUI offender is arrested between 11 p.m. and 4 a.m. on weekends and is caught driving with a BAC of .16, which is twice the legal limit. It takes the body about one hour to metabolize one alcoholic drink and approximately 3 drinks in one hour places a person at .08. This means that the average DUI offenders gets behind the wheel after having an average of 6 or more drinks per hour, and although most reasonable adults would see the dangers in this, DUI accidents continue to claim the lives of thousands each year.
When a driver is so careless as to allow their behavior to harm others, our firm stands as an advocate for victims and their families. Our Chicago accident attorneys have been aiding victims in obtaining compensation for their injuries and financial and emotional losses since 1992. Contact our firm for a free consultation, and we can discuss your case with you and determine if you can hold another liable for their negligence.