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Driving impairments caused by alcohol

On Behalf of | Jan 7, 2022 | Car Accidents |

If you imbibe alcohol, then get behind the wheel of a car to drive, you’re not necessarily breaking the law. It depends on numerous factors, including what your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level happens to be at the time. In Florida, if you’re age 21 or beyond and your BAC registers .08 or higher, you’re prohibited from operating a motor vehicle.

Every person’s body reacts to alcohol differently. You might be able to drink a couple glasses of wine and still feel relatively sober while another person could drink the same amount and exhibit signs of intoxication. For most people, however, alcohol causes certain brain impairments that can impede the ability to drive safely.

Visual function can become impaired with a .02 BAC level

When you consume alcohol, it affects your brain, which, in turn, has a significant impact on other parts of your body, including your vision. While you’re legally permitted to drive if your BAC level is less than .08, your visual function can decline at a .02 BAC level. In addition to overall vision decline, alcohol can slow your body movements, including eye movements, as well as reaction time, muscle movement and more.

If you’re driving along a Florida roadway, you basically have no way of knowing if a nearby driver is intoxicated and shouldn’t be driving. You might notice a car swerving across the yellow line or a driver who is randomly applying his or her brakes, but there is no way for you to know with 100% certainty whether he or she is drunk. If a vehicle cuts into your lane or fails to stop at a red light, etc., you might not be able to react safely or swiftly enough to avoid a collision.

Recovering from a drunk driving accident

Sadly, many Florida drunk driving accidents are fatal. Surviving one of these accidents means you might have suffered severe injuries that require weeks or months of recovery time in the hospital or at home. In fact, some injuries have permanent consequences, especially if you’ve suffered a traumatic brain injury. You might need time off work, or you might never be able to return to the workplace again.

How full of a recovery you achieve depends on numerous issues, including the type of support network you have in place to provide assistance. Such a network might include a visiting nurse or occupational therapy team, as well as patient advocates and a legal team. Drunk drivers cause collisions that take thousands of lives every year. If a drunk driver causes you injury in a car accident, state law allows you to seek restitution in court.