Consuming Alcohol Before Driving: Understanding the Impacts

drunk driver texas

When a drunk individual gets behind the wheel of a car and causes an accident, it can have devastating effects on all parties involved. Though there are laws to deter and punish intoxicated drivers, the best prevention method is to understand how consuming alcohol can impact your brain and the traumatic effects for both the perpetrator and victim of these accidents. If you’re the victim of an accident caused by drunk driving, speaking with a Houston drunk driving accident lawyer can ensure you get the necessary justice.

How Does Consuming Alcohol Affect Your Body and Brain?

There’s a common misconception that alcohol makes people feel more happy and more alert. However, the opposite is true. Alcohol is a depressant, meaning you’ll likely feel more tired, sluggish, and foggy.

This is due to the fact that alcohol works to suppress your nervous system, causing your muscles to relax and your brain to react much slower than it usually would.

Because your brain reacts more slowly, the messages your brain sends to the rest of your body become delayed, meaning your reaction time to events is significantly slower than if you had no alcohol in your system.

How Does Alcohol Impact the Ability to Drive?

Because a significant amount of attention and focus is necessary to operate a vehicle, the effects of alcohol on your brain can severely delay and limit your ability to drive.

As a driver, you’ll need to ensure you can make split-second decisions. However, alcohol slows down the ability to make decisions and respond accordingly, meaning you may not be able to avoid hazards. You could react too late when the car in front of you breaks, causing you to collide with another vehicle.

Similarly, alcohol can affect your vision. In many cases, consuming alcohol can make it seem like your sight is doubled, blurry, or slowed down. Similarly, your depth perception can become affected, which makes it challenging to properly judge the distance between objects. Blurry or double vision increases the odds of drifting across the road, missing traffic signs, or running off the road.

Who Is Liable for DUI-Related Accidents and Injuries?

Generally, the driver will be found responsible for accidents caused by their decision to operate a vehicle while intoxicated. As a result, they could face a suspended or revoked license or, in some cases, prison.

It may seem like the only person who will be held responsible for your injuries is the driver. However, this is not true for every case. While yes, the driver will be held accountable, Texas operates under dram shop law.

Dram shop law dictates that establishments that serve clearly intoxicated individuals can be held liable for accidents they cause. Generally, bartenders have the right to refuse service to patrons who have consumed large amounts of alcoholic beverages. If an establishment fails to cease supplying a driver with drinks and they cause an accident, you can also sue the bar for negligence.

If you or a loved one have been impacted by a drunk driver, don’t wait to get justice. Contact the Gonzalez Law Group today to set up a free consultation to discuss your case.