Drunk drivers are a menace on the streets of Billings, Montana, as well as the rest of the country. It is their negligence that leads to a number of automobile accidents, many of which result in injuries or fatalities. Sadly, despite stringent laws related to driving under the influence of alcohol, drunk driving accidents are a reality and one such incident recently played out in Billings, Montana.
According to the news report, a woman sustained injuries to her leg when the vehicle she was in was struck by another vehicle that was driven by a drunk driver. When police officers reached the scene of the accident, they saw two damaged cars, one of which was pushed into the yard of a residence as a result of the collision.
Witnesses told the police that the driver of the car that caused the crash was trying to leave the scene. When officers approached that car, they found that the airbags had deployed, but the driver was trying to start the engine. When the driver finally opened the door, the officer noticed a strong smell of alcohol on the driver's breath. Breath tests showed that the driver had a blood alcohol content of 0.321 percent, which is over four times higher than the legal limit of 0.08 percent. The drunk driver was arrested and booked into the Yellowstone County jail.
Upon checking the records of the driver, it was found that this incident was the 52-year-old man's tenth DUI offense, with his first offense having occurred in 1985, as well as two offenses each in 1994 and 1995 and single offenses in 1996, 1997, 1999 and 2005. The man's criminal record demonstrates that he is an extremely dangerous repeat offender.
Considering the woman only suffered an injury to her leg, one could say the woman in this accident was, in a way, lucky. In a case where a drunk driver's records explicitly show how irresponsible he or she is, it may be a wise decision for the victim of the accident to seek punitive damages. The compensation may not be able to relieve a victim of physiological distress, but can at least provide some much needed monetary support.