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Ohio Drunk Driving Accidents a Serious Spring Threat

Ohio auto accident attorneyDriveitHOME™ recently published a survivor story by Jacob Smith, which highlights the life-altering consequences of many drunk driving accidents.

Teens are among those at highest risk through the spring high school and college graduation season, and the beginning of summer travel season. While many focus on the fatal consequences of drinking and driving, Smith reminds teens that they could survive.

Hit in April 2014 by a drunk driver while in a school vehicle on the way home from a leadership conference, Smith suffered a broken back, a traumatic brain injury and other serious injuries. He had to learn to walk and to read again. While his condition continues to improve, he could carry some of the consequences of the accident for the rest of his life.

Tragic drunk driving accidents are among the most complex and difficult cases an Akron injury lawyer can handle. Multiple victims and low mandatory insurance limits can complicate claims, making it more difficult for victims to receive adequate compensation. In some cases, a restaurant or bar may share blame for serving an intoxicated or underage patron. In other cases, a victim's own uninsured motorist (UM) or underinsured motorist (UIM) policy may provide another means of compensation.

In some cases, victims may even have been friends or relatives of an at-fault driver. Victims in those cases may also be entitled to compensation for injuries, including medical bills and rehabilitative care.

Fatal Akron Car Accidents on the Rise

The Akron Beacon Journal recently reported fatal car accidents are on the rise. The Akron Metropolitan Area Transportation Study reports 49 fatal collisions in 2016, up from 40 in 2014. Those collisions claimed 142 lives.

While the overall number of collisions fell slightly, still more than 18,500 crashes were reported. The findings are based on nearly 55,000 crash reports from Summit, Portage and Wayne counties. Safety advocates continue to blame distracted driving and intoxicated motorists for an outsized portion of the threat.

The most dangerous intersection was SR 14 and Brooke Valley Trail/Shady Lake Drive in Streetsboro, where 56 crashes were reported, nearly half involving injuries.

Young Drivers at High Risk of Ohio Crashes

Significant focus is also being put on young drivers this spring. The Ohio Department of Insurance reports drivers ages 15 to 19 are involved in 15 percent of all crashes. Negligence on the part of the young drivers contributed to nearly 3/4s of such crashes, resulting in 286 fatalities and more than 41,000 injuries.

Talking to your teens can not only keep them safe in the event of an accident but can reduce liability as well. When it comes to keeping teenagers safe on the road, it's all about common sense. Most accidents and injuries continue to involve drunk drivers, failure to wear a seat belt, distracted driving, fatigued driving, speeding, and riding with too many passengers in the vehicle.

Summit County Prosecutor Sheri Bevan Walsh recently wrote a safe-driving editorial for teenagers reminding parents and teenagers to follow the rules of Ohio's graduated drivers' licensing program, which places a number of restrictions on probationary drivers.

In the event of a crash caused by a drunk driver, contact an experienced auto accident attorney at Gervelis Law Firm.

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