Accepting personal responsibility is an important part of operating a motor vehicle. People have to understand and follow traffic safety laws so that they don’t cause crashes that injure or kill other people. Motorists have control over how fast they drive and the routes that they take, as well as the maintenance that they perform on their vehicles.
Drivers also choose whether they stay focused on the road in front of them or pick up their phones and if they will or won’t drive after drinking. No one other than a drunk driver is to blame for their unsafe choice. However, there are scenarios in which other people make it easier for an impaired motorist to endanger others.
Kentucky law allows for the prosecution of a drunk driver who causes a crash and also civil litigation to hold them responsible for physical harm caused by a wreck. Under Kentucky dram shop laws, businesses can also sometimes be held financially responsible for drunk driving collisions under certain circumstances.
1. Staff members serve a minor alcohol
It is only legal for those who are 21 years of age or older to consume alcohol. Younger individuals often have a lower tolerance for alcohol and also have more challenges being safe when they operate motor vehicles. Lower levels of alcohol impairment could therefore pose a safety challenge for someone who is still underage. Businesses must abide by restrictions on service to minors. If the staff at a bar serves someone underage who then causes the crash, the business could be subject to a dram shop claim later.
2. Staff members serve someone who has had too much to drink already
There are many tell-tale signs that an individual is under the influence of alcohol. They may have red eyes and slurred speech. They may stumble when they walk or doze off at the table. Staff members at restaurants and bars should be on the lookout for warning signs of intoxication and should gently but firmly cut off those who have had too much to drink. If there is evidence that a business kept serving someone who was obviously intoxicated and then that patron left and caused a major crash, the business could have partial liability for the consequences of the wreck.
Exploring every option for compensation is often important for those who have been affected by Kentucky drunk driving collisions. Speaking with an experienced lawyer about liability and restitution is often the best first step forward in this regard.