Tips to Stay Safe During the Holiday Season

Happy Holidays!

Wishing you and your family a happy and safe holiday season.

 

new-years-eveThis is an exciting time of the year. Everyone wants to spread joy and good cheer. There are parties and celebrations starting with Thanksgiving in November through Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza and New Year’s Eve celebrations into January of 2014.

Everyone wants to have a good time and you should, but here are a few important things to remember. Driving under the influence carries serious consequences.  Even if you are not involved in a collision, if you are arrested with a blood alcohol level of .08 you will be arrested and subject to severe penalties, including but not limited to incarceration, suspension of your driver’s license and other fines and penalties.  If you are driving under the influence and are involved in a collision that injures or kills someone you will be subjected to significant criminal penalties as well as civil damages.  You can read more about Driving under the Influence Vehicle Code Sections 23152 and 23153.

Celebrate the holidays without taking unnecessary risks and be safe.

Here are a few tips:

  1. Be on the lookout for drunk drivers and call 911 to report suspected drunk drivers.
  2. Arrange for a designated driver to drive you or friends who consume alcohol to and from holiday functions. If all of your friends are consuming alcohol, arrange for a car service to drive or call a cab.
  3.  If you are hosting a holiday event, be careful to monitor your guest’s alcohol consumption and don’t allow anyone to leave your home driving if they are under the influence. If your guests consume alcohol at your home and subsequently injure someone in an automobile accident you could be liable.

What to do if you witness an automobile accident:

  1. Stop only if it is safe to do so.
  2. Call 911 to report the accident if it appears to be as significant impact or an injury causing collision.
  3. If you are able to stop and offer assistance, provide the involved party or parties your name and phone number.
  4. If the police were called and you are there when they arrive, provide a statement to the officer that responds.
  5. Write down what you witnessed as soon as possible, in as much detail as possible, while the accident is fresh in your mind. Memories fade and your recollection will never be clearer than when you first witnessed the accident.

What to do if you are involved in an accident:

  1. Call 911 and report the accident.
  2. If you are able, obtain or exchange information from the other drivers or people involved.  Ask for identification and obtain name, address, phone number, driver’s license number and insurance information.  I suggest you write it down and also take a photo of these documents with your cell phone if possible. Don’t only rely on the cell phone photos of information as sometimes photos get erased.
  3. If you are able, take photos of the vehicles and people involved.  Vehicle location at the scene and property damage caused by the accident will be important information later.
  4. If there are witnesses to the accident obtain their contact information as soon as you become aware of the witness. Sometimes witnesses leave the scene of an accident before the police arrive or are not asked to provide a statement to the responding officer.
  5. Obtain the name of the police officer that responds to the scene if possible.
  6. If you are injured seek medical attention so that you can be evaluated as soon as possible. While some injuries are visible and obvious, like cuts, bleeding and fractures, there are many injuries that are not visible but can have significant consequences and long term effects.

For more information concerning your rights after a traffic collision, consult reputable experienced attorneys to help you obtain compensation for your injuries.

Read more on the topic of Impaired Driving.

 

 

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