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How does alcohol affect driving?

A lot of times, West Virginians take to the road with little thought about the other motorists around them. This happens because it has become part of our daily routine and, hopefully, few of us have been involved in a serious accident. Yet, at any given time, a negligent driver can be nearby, putting you at risk of being involved in a serious accident. This is especially true when another driver is intoxicated.

Many West Virginians partake in alcoholic beverages, but having alcohol in one's blood stream can greatly affect the ability to drive. In fact, according to the CDC, having only two alcoholic drinks could raise one's blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) to .02 percent. Even at this level, which is below the legal limit, a driver can see a decline in their visual function, making it difficult to track a moving target. At the legal limit, .08 percent, an individual will likely suffer impairment to concentration, speed control, information processing and perception.

If an individual has approximately five alcoholic drinks, then he or she may have difficulty staying in his or her lane and may brake improperly. At a .15 BAC, or about seven drinks, a driver will likely have difficulty controlling his or her vehicle and paying attention to basic driving tasks. So, as you can see, those who drink a lot and even those who only drink a little, can put other drivers at risk of being seriously injured in a drunk driving accident.

If you have been hurt in one of these wrecks, you may want to discuss with an attorney how you can recover your losses. Filing a personal injury lawsuit may allow you to recover compensation from another based on his or her negligence. This money can then help cover medical expenses, lost wages and ease pain and suffering.

Source:, "Effects of Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC)," accessed on Sept. 25, 2015

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