Drunk Driving Accidents in Gulf Shores
Gulf Shores is the southernmost city in the state of Alabama. The area offers white sandy beaches and a number of other attractions, such as the Gulf State Park Fishing Pier, the Gulf State Park, Adventure Island, and the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo. Route 59 connects the area to Foley and U.S. 98 to the north, while Route 182 offers a scenic approach from neighboring Florida. Route 180 and a ferry connect Gulf Shores to Dauphin Island to the west. Even in these pleasant surroundings, serious or fatal car crashes caused by drunk drivers are a recurrent risk. If you or a loved one has been hit by a drunk driver, you need to reach out to a Gulf Shores drunk driving accident lawyer without delay. With extensive experience, Whit A. Thomas can analyze the facts of your case and determine your options for compensation.Holding a Drunk Driver Liable for Your Injuries
In Alabama, as in other states, driving under the influence of alcohol is illegal. The basic offense of driving under the influence (DUI) in Alabama consists of operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content of 0.08 percent or higher. Drunk driving is also a major cause of accidents across the U.S., and Alabama is no exception. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reports that that 28 people in the United States die each day in motor vehicle crashes involving an alcohol-impaired driver. In fact, data from the CDC show that more than 3,100 people were killed in drunk driving wrecks from 2003-2012. According to the Alabama Department of Transportation’s 2016 Crash Facts, a total of 5,989 drivers who caused crashes were cited for a DUI.
In Alabama, drivers who cause accidents are liable for any damages that result. In other words, a drunk driving accident attorney can help Gulf Shores victims pursue compensation, legally known as damages, by filing a civil lawsuit against the at-fault driver. These lawsuits are rooted in the legal theory of negligence. This means that a person has failed to exercise the level of care that an ordinarily prudent person would use in the same or a similar situation. In order to win a negligence claim, the plaintiff (the party filing the lawsuit) must prove that the at-fault driver owed the plaintiff a duty of care, the at-fault driver violated the duty of care owed to the plaintiff by driving under the influence of alcohol, and the at-fault driver’s violation was a direct cause of the accident and the plaintiff’s harm. Keep in mind that a driver can be civilly liable even if their BAC was not at or above the legal limit, as long as it can be shown that the defendant’s driving was affected by their intoxication.
Drunk driving accidents can lead to serious and long-term injuries that can be extremely costly to treat. Once your Gulf Shores drunk driving accident attorney successfully proves the defendant’s liability, you may be able to recover a variety of damages, such as medical expenses, property damage, rehabilitation costs, lost wages, pain and suffering, and any other losses stemming from the accident. In some extreme cases, a plaintiff may be able to recover punitive damages as well. Punitive damages may be available in cases in which the plaintiff can prove that the defendant deliberately engaged in wanton behavior. Each case is unique, and the exact amount of compensation available to a plaintiff will vary depending on the specific nature and extent of the injuries suffered.Seek Legal Guidance Following a Serious Car Crash in Gulf Shores
Drunk driving accidents can lead to injuries that are just as devastating as those caused by distracted driving accidents. If you have been injured or have lost a loved one in an accident caused by a drunk driver, you may be entitled to compensation for your harm. Whit A. Thomas is a skilled drunk driving accident lawyer serving the Gulf Shores area who is familiar with the nuances of Alabama DWI and personal injury laws. For a free case evaluation, do not hesitate to call us at (251) 943-9330 or contact us online.