Two people including a suspected drunk driver, were injured in a Riverside County car accident, the afternoon of March 20, 2012. According to a news report in The Press-Enterprise, the DUI collision occurred along the 22500 block of South Canyon Lake Drive. Police say two vehicles collided head-on. Officials arrested one of the drivers, identified as Rene Rissetto, on suspicion of driving under the influence. Rissetto and the driver of the other car were hospitalized with unspecified injuries. The investigation is ongoing.
My thoughts and prayers are with the injured victim of this DUI crash. I wish the victim the very best for a speedy and complete recovery.
Drunk Driving Statistics
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2009 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), there were 27 fatalities and 363 injuries involving DUI collisions in the unincorporated areas of Riverside County. Also, countywide, 87 people died and 986 were injured as a result of alcohol-related crashes during the same year.
Laws and Liability Issues
Based on this news report, one of the drivers was operating 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 states that it is illegal for a driver to operate a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent or higher.
Officials also describe this crash as a head-on collision, which is often caused by one of the motorists drifting into opposing lanes of traffic or making an unsafe turn. In these cases, the at-fault or negligent driver can be held liable for injuries caused to the victim, in addition to facing criminal charges.
Injured victims would be well advised to contact an experienced Riverside personal injury lawyer, who will stay abreast of the official investigation and ensure that their legal rights and best interests are protected. The best personal injury law firms will always offer a free consultation and comprehensive case evaluation to car accident victims and their families. For more information about the dangers of driving under the influence, please visit the Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) web site at www.madd.org.