Residents of Las Vegas know how common it is for people to drive drunk. Even at the legal limit of 0.08 percent, the presence of alcohol in the system leads to slower reaction times, impaired depth perception and poor peripheral vision. Drunk driving crashes often turn out fatal; in fact, about one-third of all deaths resulting from traffic injuries stem from DUI crashes. Common causes of death include head trauma and excessive blood loss.

Excessive blood loss can occur when the internal organs are, for example, pierced by glass or ruptured through contact with the steering column. When the heart can no longer pump blood efficiently, the victim goes into hypovolemic shock and dies unless emergency personnel can replace those fluids in time. Flying debris and impact against the steering wheel or another hard surface can result in head trauma.

Young adults are at a high risk for drunk driving accidents. Even when compared to older adults with an equal BAC, they run the higher risk. This may be due to their lack of driving experience and to their tendency to travel with, and become distracted by, passengers. Motorcyclists, people with prior DUI convictions and those who mix drugs and medications with alcohol are also particularly susceptible. Individuals are encouraged to prevent DUIs when possible among friends and family.

Even when they involve no fatalities, drunk driving crashes can leave victims with serious physical conditions and even emotional trauma. Under personal injury law, those hurt in car accidents through little or no fault of their own can be eligible for compensation. To get the defendant’s auto insurance company to pay out, though, victims will most likely need legal representation. Personal injury lawyers have networks of professionals who can build up a case before it goes to the negotiation stage.