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5 Signs of a Drunk Driver On the Road

September 6, 2017 |

In Wisconsin, drunk driving (Operating While Intoxicated) is a serious criminal offense. Drunk drivers injure thousands of victims each year and cause millions of dollars in damages. Although a drunk driver isn’t always easy to spot, here are 5 telltale signs that a driver on the road might be over the legal limit:

1. Speed Changes

An intoxicated driver may frequently change their driving speed. You might see them drive quickly one minute and very slowly the next even within the same speed limit. A person that’s intoxicated can focus on one thing, but it’s hard for them to divert their attention to two different things. That means, if they’re too busy focusing on staying in their lane, they’re not going to do a good job of regulating their speed. If their speed often changes, it may be a sign of intoxication.

2. Low Speeds

Alcohol is a depressant. What a driver thinks is a normal speed may actually be very slow. If a driver travels very slowly for the posted speed limit or for the usual flow of traffic, it may be a sign that they’re under the influence of alcohol.

3. Weaving

An intoxicated driver often has difficulty staying in their lane of travel. They might hug the shoulder, cross over the center line, or even completely cross into oncoming traffic. This sign of intoxication might be subtle. If they’re not staying in their lane like a sober driver can do easily, they may be driving after having too much to drink.

4. Tailgating

What may seem like normal driving distance to a drunk driver may not be normal at all. For that reason, they might follow too closely to other cars in order to try to give the impression that they’re able to keep up with the flow of traffic.

5. Poor Judgment

When a person is under the influence of alcohol, their driving may show signs of decreased coordination or an inability to make proper judgments on the road. They might proceed through a stop sign without stopping. They might slam on their brakes without a good reason to stop. A driver might forget to turn off their high beams for oncoming traffic. Any of these poor decisions could signal a driver under the influence.

If you’ve been hurt by a drunk driver, you may have a right to compensation. In addition to compensation for your medical bills, you may be able to recover for lost wages, pain and suffering and other losses. Even if the driver isn’t convicted in a criminal court, you may still be able to successfully bring a civil action. If you’ve been hurt, please contact the Milwaukee drunk driving accident lawyers at Cannon & Dunphy. We’re happy to speak with you about your case and explore your options for recovery.

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