Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers

Aggressive representation when driver intoxication kills or injures someone in North Carolina

It’s never okay to drink and drive. Despite stringent laws against any type of impaired driving, accidents still occur on a regular basis in and around the Rutherfordton area. These accidents can lead to serious injuries.

At Price, Petho & Associates, we’ve been fighting for accident victims since 1979. Our Rutherfordton drunk driving accident lawyers are skilled at showing that drunk driving, often in combination with other traffic violations such as speeding, caused your injuries or caused a loved one to die. We regularly work with the police who investigate the accident and arrest the drunk driver. Our team fights to obtain all the compensation you deserve. We have a strong record of substantial jury verdicts and settlements.

How can we help?

How common are drunk driving crashes in Rutherfordton, NC?

Rutherfordton may be a small town in North Carolina, but that does not insulate our residents from the risks posed by impaired drivers. According to data available from the North Carolina Department of Transportation for 2020, there were more than 11,475 total vehicle accidents caused by impaired drivers throughout the state during the latest reporting year. Out of these incidents, there were 7,246 total injuries and 412 fatalities. Even though alcohol-impaired driving collisions accounted for only 4.6% of the total crashes in the state during that year, they accounted for more than 24.8% of all traffic fatalities.

What injuries are caused by drunk driving accidents?

Unfortunately, vehicle accidents involving drunk drivers often occur at higher speeds, and the impaired drivers sometimes do not even touch the brakes before slamming into other vehicles, pedestrians, bicyclists, or motorcyclists. When drunk driving crashes do not result in a fatality, it is not uncommon for victims to sustain the following injuries:

  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Traumatic amputations
  • Burn injuries
  • Spinal cord trauma including paralysis
  • Complicated and simple bone fractures
  • Shoulder, neck, and back injuries
  • Internal organ damage
  • Internal bleeding
  • Crush injuries
  • Hearing or vision loss
  • Nerve, muscle, ligament, and tissue damage
  • Severe lacerations or puncture wounds
  • Scarring and disfigurement

Drunk driving accident victims regularly must contend with significant expenses, beginning with the initial emergency medical bills. Depending on the severity of the injury, victims in these cases may have to deal with ongoing medical visits and continual rehabilitation. Often, drunk driving accident victims are unable to work while they recover. This can lead to significant financial losses for victims and their families.

If a loved one tragically  died because a driver was intoxicated, we file a wrongful death claim on behalf of the family members.

How much alcohol affects a driver’s ability to control a car?

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), states that the dangers of driver intoxication worsen as the driver’s blood alcohol content (BAC) level increases.

  • A BAC of .02 or more (about 2 beers) can cause difficulty multi-tasking.
  • A BAC of .08 or more (about 4 beers) results in difficulty steering, difficulty keeping the car below the speed limit, difficulty reasoning, and reduced coordination. Drivers with a BAC of .08 or more can be charged with Driving Under the Influence.
  • A BAC of .15 (about 7 beers) results in slowed reaction times, difficulty keeping in the same lane, difficulty focusing, and difficulty controlling a car or truck.

Who is liable for a drunk driving accident in Rutherfordton?

At Price, Petho & Associates, our team is regularly able to prove liability in these cases by gathering photographs taken at the scene of the crash, as well as video surveillance footage from nearby homes or businesses. We also work closely with law enforcement officials to gather the evidence needed to prove that the other driver was impaired by alcohol, and that their impairment caused the car accident or truck accident. 

In addition to the driver, defendants may include:

  • An owner of the vehicle if the owner is different than the driver, and the owner gave the driver permission to use the vehicle.
  • An employer such as a trucking company that hired the driver.
  • A licensed seller of alcohol who sells alcohol to a minor – if the intoxicated minor then causes an accident. We’ll explain when a seller may be liable if he or she sells alcohol to someone who was visibility intoxicated.

Anyone else who contributed to the accident may also be liable.

How does a DUI charge affect the civil claim?

If a driver’s BAC is .08 or higher, he/she will likely be charged with Driving Under the Influence. Our Rutherfordton drunk driving lawyers coordinate your case with the prosecution. There are several benefits to a criminal conviction. First, you help keep a drunk driver off the road. Second, the conviction may be able to be used to help show the defendant is also liable civilly. Third, the breath or blood tests often confirm the driver was intoxicated.

You do not need to show a defendant was criminally convicted to win your civil claim. In many cases, the defendant is not formally charged.

What is the time limit to file a drunk driving accident claim in Rutherfordton?

The North Carolina personal injury statute of limitations for personal injury actions is three years from the date the injury occurs. The statute of limitations for wrongful death claims is two years.

Don’t wait. We need to investigate the accident as soon as possible. If there is a criminal case, we need to be able to work with the police and the prosecution. You need medical help now.

Our Rutherfordton personal injury lawyers will calmly guide you through each phase of your claim process.

How much is my drunk driving case worth?

Our goal is to secure the following types of compensation for our clients:

  • Coverage of all medical bills, including ER care, surgeries, hospitalizations, rehabilitation care, assistive devices, and medication
  • Lost income if you cannot work or have a permanent disability because of the accident
  • Pain and suffering damages
  • Loss of enjoyment of life damages
  • Property damage expenses
  • Household out-of-pocket costs

If a driver was intoxicated, especially if his/her BAC level was very high, we seek punitive damages against the impaired driver

Do you have a drunk driving accident lawyer near me?

Our Rutherfordton office is located at 224 N Main St. Rutherfordton, NC. We also have offices in Charlotte and Rockingham. Our lawyers do meet clients at their homes or a healthcare facility if a client is immobile or ill.

Call our Rutherfordton drunk driving accident lawyer today

If you or somebody you care about has been injured or killed in a crash caused by a drunk driver in or around Rutherfordton, NC, contact the team at Price, Petho & Associates as soon as possible. Our attorneys have the resources necessary to investigate every aspect of these cases. We will stand up to aggressive insurance carriers, and we will help obtain any evidence needed to prove liability.

If you need a Rutherfordton drunk driving accident attorney, you can contact us for a free consultation or by calling 704-372-2160.