You’ve done all the right things: check your blind spots, maintain your vehicle’s brakes and absolutely do not engage in distracted driving behaviors. Then, out of nowhere, you are involved in a car accident with another vehicle and you suspect something may be wrong with the other driver. What might indicate that the driver is intoxicated?
Intoxication can come in many forms, including drunk driving. However, it’s possible that the driver could be under the influence of prescription or illicit drugs as well. Keep in mind, authorities called to the scene of the accident are trained to recognize these behaviors, but it’s always good to keep an eye out if possible after a car accident. Never accuse another driver of impairment after a car accident if exchanging information; just be sure to stick to the basics like license and insurance information.
If a person is intoxicated, that person may show signs of cognitive impairment in drunk driving accidents, like slurred speech. There are also physical manifestations of intoxication, like eye tracking, when the eyes jump when moving in a straight line. Coordination and reaction time will also likely be affected, which is why officers will often administer a field sobriety test prior to conducting a breathalyzer test on someone who is suspected of being intoxicated.
At the end of the day, if you suspect impairment of another driver when you are involved in a car accident, call the authorities. It’s their job to detect impairment and to take the proper actions. While their criminal investigation will be separate from a personal injury lawsuit in cases of car accidents with injuries and damages, their investigation and findings can prove useful for the latter.