What To Do If You Are in An Accident With A Drunk Driver
Two of the most fun and exciting events of the summer will be happening this weekend. As you might guess, these two events are Bonnaroo and the CMA Fest. Fans come from across the state, country, and even the world to attend these world-renowned music festivals. You can find our festival safety tips for these events here.
Thousands of Fans Flock to Tennessee for Bonnaroo
Bonnaroo is a music and arts festival that takes place annually in Manchester, Tennessee. This year it is scheduled for June 8-11, 2017.
Featuring the best and brightest lineup of today’s contemporary artists, Bonnaroo’s lineup this year includes artists as talented and diverse as U2, The Red Hot Chili Peppers and The Weeknd, just to name a few of the more than 100 performers. Literally thousands of fans will take the pilgrimage on I-24 to attend.
While this is a tremendous event that provides the opportunity to see a diverse and eclectic collection of superstars in one place, it also carries its own set of problems. Specifically, the facilities to entertain all of these music fans is woefully insufficient.
There is no lodging close to the concert venue. As such, people attending the event have only a couple of choices. They can sleep in tents or RV’s, or they can brave traffic in and out of the venue for each of the four days while traveling long distances for lodging.
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Unfortunately, those same people who are traveling in their cars or trucks to find a bed are typically doing what almost everybody at Bonnaroo is doing – drinking heavily. As a result, Tennessee’s interstates become virtual injuries waiting to happen as a result of a heavy influx of drunk drivers.
CMA Fest Brings Tourists to Nashville Roads
Like Bonnaroo, CMA Fest is another outstanding annual event. A music appreciation showcase for fans of country music, CMA Fest draws country fans from around the world to see all of their favorite artists in one location over a four-day period.
This country event, like its contemporary cousin down the road, is a who’s who of country music superstars like Keith Urban, Luke Bryan and Carrie Underwood to name just a few.
The other similarity between CMA Fest and Bonnaroo is insufficient lodging for the event, mixed with heavy alcohol use, which results in placing drunk drivers on Nashville’s local roads and interstates including Interstate 65, Interstate 40 and Interstate 24.
While there is a large number of hotels downtown, they are simply not enough to handle the influx of tourists. As such, once the night’s entertainment is done, people get in their cars and head to the outskirts to find a place to sleep.
In a perfect world, all the fans attending these events would have a designated driver or utilize the services of a rideshare company such as Uber or Lyft. Unfortunately our world is not perfect and neither are the drivers that will descend upon Nashville next week.
As such, we need to know what to do at the scene if you are injured by a drunk driver in Nashville. I have written many blog posts concerning car accidents before, such as 5 Things to Do If You are Involved in a Car Accidentand What to Do If You Have Been In A Car Accident.
The purpose of this entry, though, is to address the specifics if you are in a car accident involving a drunk driver. There are a few unique things to consider if the incident involves alcohol.
What To Do If You Are Involved in a Car Accident with a Drunk Driver
Call the police.
Recognize that alcohol causes people to act in a fashion they might not otherwise embrace. If someone is obviously intoxicated, you do not need to interact with them. It would probably be best not to. Call the police, go back to your car, lock the doors and wait patiently.
Write down the license plate.
Make sure you get the license plate number of the other driver. It is altogether possible they will ultimately seek to leave the scene so as to avoid the consequences of drunk driving.
There will be many more motorists on the road, and as a result, many more accidents than usual. It may take up to an hour, or even more, before the police arrive. It is very important that you wait and not leave the scene of the accident.
Request a sobriety test on the other driver.
When the officer arrives, make sure that you fully advise him of what occurred. Additionally make sure he notes your belief that the other driver is intoxicated. Request that the officer perform a roadside sobriety test on the other driver. Unfortunately, I have seen too often cases where the police officer fails to do so in the interest of expediency.
Speak with an attorney.
Having handled the situation, the next step you should take is to contact a skilled personal injury attorney. Don’t rely on a television commercial to do this. Get referrals, and check qualifications. You can click here for advice on how to pick an attorney. Meet with the potential attorney and see if you think you will be a good fit. You are going to spend the next year or so together and you want to make sure it will be a positive experience.
While it is my hope you will never be involved in a car accident and certainly not one with a drunk driver, there is a realistic chance it will happen. This is especially so next week with a heavy influx of people for these festivals.
In following the few simple steps above, you will be able to successfully handle a difficult and unpleasant situation. You will be able to safely and positively handle the scene of an accident with a drunk driver. Further, you will protect yourself in terms of obtaining justice in the form of a lawsuit as a result of this incident.
Feel free to contact me at Raybin & Weissman or give me a call at 615-256-6666. You will talk to me directly, I will return your calls and emails personally, and I will be happy to help you do whatever is necessary to obtain the Justice you deserve.