A recent auto accident on Interstate 95 in northern Virginia is suspected to have been caused by an intoxicated driver. Even with stiffer drunk driving penalties and less leniency on drunk drivers by the courts, drunk driving remains a deadly problem for Virginians. In 2006, approximately 29,595 Virginia drivers were convicted for driving under the influence of alcohol. Intoxicated drivers were cited as the cause of approximately 374 highway fatalities and 7,543 injuries in the Commonwealth in 2006.
If you, a family member or loved one has been injured by a drunk driver, you should contact the attorneys at Pierce & Thornton as soon as possible. We have successfully settled and tried cases against drunk drivers. Call us so we can investigate the facts, preserve the evidence in your case and obtain all money damages allowed under Virginia law.
Under Virginia law, a drunk driver who causes personal injury can be required to not only compensate his victim for the injuries caused, but also will be required to pay punitive damages for his reckless conduct if the driver’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was .15 or above at the time of the crash. This is called the “statutory presumption” for punitive damages.
If the drunk driver’s BAC was not measured or measured below .15, then the drunk driver can still be forced to pay punitive damages if it is proven that when he began drinking alcohol or while drinking alcohol he knew (or should have known) that his ability to operate a motor vehicle would be impaired, or if he knew that his ability to operate a motor vehicle was, in fact, impaired.