Damages Available to Drugged Driving Victims
Injury victims can seek compensation for their injuries by filing a claim with their own insurance or by filing through the impaired driver’s insurance company. In Washington state, victims are entitled to seek the following types of damages:
- Medical expenses. These expenses include the cost of all medical treatment you received up to this point and any you will require in the future. To make sure you receive all the treatment you need and keep all relevant receipts to make sure you are properly compensated.
- Lost income. Most victims of a drugged driving crash can receive compensation for the time they missed from work. In severe circumstances where the victim is unable to return to normal job performance, they may be compensated for those permanent changes.
- Pain and suffering. You may be compensated for the actual physical pain and severe discomfort you suffered in the accident. The duration of your recovery and the extent of the injuries will determine how much you receive for this.
- Property damage. Victims can get money for any damage done to their personal property in the accident.
- Out-of-pocket expenses. Every cost associated with your injuries and recovery could be recovered in the settlement.
What About Driving-While-Stoned On Marijuana Accidents?
In November 2012, voters in Washington State made it legal to smoke marijuana recreationally, without any prescription or medical excuse—making it legal for adults 21 years and older to possess up to an ounce of marijuana. Marijuana users are about 25 percent more likely to be involved in a crash compared to those not under the influence, according to NHTSA’s “Drug and Alcohol Crash Risk” study, released in 2015.
Marijuana use can cause dizziness and slowed reaction time, and drivers are more likely to drift and swerve when they're high. There are a lot of soft-sounding slang terms such as ‘riding that green highway,’ 'nap-steering,' ‘baked driving,’ ‘flying while driving,’ and others but impaired driving is still very serious and causes hundreds of accidents every year.
In recent years, State actions to legalize the use of marijuana for medical and recreational use have increased concern over potential risks of driving impaired by marijuana. Other than alcohol, it is the drug that is most frequently detected in drivers’ systems after a vehicle crash, as well as the general driving population (Compton & Berning, 2017; Kelley-Baker et al., 2017; Lacey et al., 2009; Walsh et al., 2005).
Can Prescription & Over-The-Counter Medications Impact Ability To Drive?
Some prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) and physician-prescribed medications can cause reactions that may make it unsafe to drive.
Some medications that can impact driving include: prescription drugs for anxiety, antidepressants, opioid or medications containing codeine, some cold remedies and allergy products, tranquilizers, sleeping pills. pain relievers, and medications that include stimulants such as caffeine, ephedrine, pseudoephedrine.
A large percentage of those taking opioid medications on a daily basis may not be safe to drive a motor vehicle.
How Big A Problem Is Multi-Substance Impairment?
Drivers impaired by multiple substances (alcohol and drugs or a mix of drugs) are more than 3 times more likely to be involved in a fatal crash.
The 2013-2014 Roadside Survey of Alcohol and Drug Use by Drivers found an increase in the number of drivers testing positive for marijuana and other drugs that can impair driving skills compared to the 2007 survey findings. In the 2013-2014 survey, nearly one in four drivers tested positive for at least one drug that could potentially affect safe driving skills.
The fight to end drug-impaired driving starts with you. Make the commitment today to drive drug-free.
What Are The Drugged Driving Accident Statistics?
According to a report by the Governors Highway Safety Association, drugs (all types: illegal and prescription) were present in 43 percent of fatal crashes in 2015.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration 2009 data demonstrates that a third of fatally injured drivers with a drug history tested positive for drugs (other than alcohol) at the time of their crash. In 2007, more than 16 percent of randomly stopped nighttime drivers were tested positive for drugs.
According to the 2013 National Survey on Drug Use and Health roughly 3.8 percent of adolescents and adults that could drive did so under the influence of illegal drugs at least once during the previous year. While the number of drivers killed in motor vehicle crashes has declined over the past five years, the number of drivers positive for drugs has increased 18% (NHTSA, 2010).
Seattle Drug-Impaired Driving Attorney
Our attorneys all too often see the devastating consequences of drugged driving crashes. In extreme circumstances, these crashes may lead to death.
At Davis Law Group, our Seattle lawyers help people recover compensation after a drugged driving crash. We also serve clients throughout Washington state.
To schedule a free case evaluation with an attorney, contact Davis Law Group today. Call (206) 727-4000, use the chat feature below or fill out the form on the contact page.