Jennifer Reams sustained serious injuries in a Santa Barbara car accident, which police say, involved a drunk driver. According to a news report in The Daily Sound, the DUI car crash occurred on Highway 101 in the Casitas Pass area of Carpinteria the night of March 17, 2011. California Highway Patrol officials say that Alfonso Robles-Contreras drove his 1997 Nissan Maxima the wrong way on the highway before crashing into five cars. Some of the vehicles the Maxima struck include a 2000 Chevrolet Malibu a 2010 Hyundai, a 2002 Lexus. Reams, the driver of the Lexus, suffered broken legs and a broken hip. Robles-Contreras and his brother suffered serious injuries as well. Police arrested the 26-year-old Robles-Contreras for driving under the influence and driving without a license.
My thoughts and prayers are with the many victims of this car accident. I also wish Jennifer Reams the very best for a speedy and complete recovery from her injuries.
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2008 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), there were no fatalities, but eight injuries reported as a result of DUI collisions in Carpinteria. During that same year, there were 19 fatalities and 287 injuries involving alcohol-related crashes in Santa Barbara County.
Driving under the influence
Police believe the driver responsible for this accident, Robles-Contreras, was under the influence of alcohol. According to California Vehicle Code Section 23152 (a): “It is unlawful for any person who is under the influence of any alcoholic beverage or drug, or under the combined influence of any alcoholic beverage and drug, to drive a vehicle.” The same section also makes it illegal to operate a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol level of 0.08 percent or higher.
In cases where negligence or wrongdoing is involved, victims can seek compensation for medical expenses, loss of wages, cost of hospitalization, rehabilitation, physical therapy and other related damages. Injured victims would be well-advised to contact a reputed California personal injury lawyer, who has the experience and a successful track record of holding drunk drivers financially responsible. In this case, since the suspected drunk driver lacked a valid license, I would be surprised if he had auto insurance. In these types of accidents, a skilled car accident lawyer will be able to inform victims about how the uninsured/underinsured motorist provision of their own car insurance policy will apply. For more information about the dangers of drunk driving, please visit the Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) web site at www.madd.org.
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