Drunk driving accidents are often serious or even fatal. One recent crash on a West Virginia highway underscores just how devastating it can be when a motorist gets behind the wheel while impaired by alcohol. Inquisitr reported on the accident, in which a family of four who was heading home from a vacation was struck by a suspected drunk driver traveling in the wrong direction on a West Virginia Highway. Four of the people in the family whose SUV was hit by the alleged drunk driver died in the accident. There were an additional four people who were in the SUV and who sustained injuries in the accident.
The alleged drunk driver reportedly traveled around two miles on the highway headed in the opposite direction of opposing traffic. He was in a pickup truck and he crossed the median. He is expected to be charged with four counts of DUI causing injury and four counts of DUI causing death. The victims families report being devastated by the tragic loss and not knowing what to do next.
Drunk Driving Has a Substantial Cost for Families and Victims
Accidents like this one put a human face on the problem of drunk driving and show how a family can be shattered in an instant when a person causes a collision while impaired. Drunk driving accidents are disproportionately likely to be deadly because drivers who are impaired often travel in the wrong direction and become involved in head-on crashes like this one. This happens not only when drivers cross medians but also when impaired drivers get onto highways using exit ramps. DUI crashes also frequently happen at high speeds, which magnifies the force of the collision.
The victims in this recent accident join hundreds of others killed in West Virginia by impaired drivers. On average, one out of every three fatal accidents in West Virginia - and across the United States - involves at least one driver impaired by alcohol at the time of the collision.
From property damages to the oftentimes staggering cost of future medical care for accident victims, drunk driving costs billions of dollars in losses each year. Families and victims are forced to bear many of these losses, although those who can prove a drunk driver caused their crash can pursue a claim for compensation from the impaired driver.
Among the drunk driving deaths which occur nationwide, more than two out of every three accident victims is sober at the time of the crash. This means many of the DUI victims are innocent people who did not drink and drive but who just happened to be at the wrong place at the wrong time - just like this family who was recently coming home from a vacation when they were killed on the highway in West Virginia.