Whether you live in Myrtle Beach full time or are one of many visitors who travel to South Carolina for summer vacation, chances are you will travel by motor vehicle while you're here. If you're a permanent resident, you might still run into tourist traffic on your daily commute to and from work, especially if you live or work near the beach.
A lot of vacationers like to party, and party activities often include alcohol. This can place you at risk for serious, perhaps even fatal, injuries, if you're driving along and someone who has consumed alcohol and decided to drive hits you. If you know how to spot a potential drunk driver on the road, you might be able to safely react in enough time to avoid a collision. Then again, even the best diligence and caution can't always help you avert disaster.
These issues definitely suggest drunk driving
You have no way of knowing where another driver has been or what he or she has been doing in the hours before getting behind the wheel. However, if you notice any of the warning signs included in the following list, it's best to try to steer clear because the driver might be intoxicated:
- When a person exits a pub or a party at night, if he or she has had too much to drink, you might see him or her driving without use of head lights. This is one of the most common errors drunk drivers make.
- Every driver has his or her style of steering when navigating bends. However, if you notice a motorist taking a bend far too widely or so tightly that he or she clips a curb, it's definitely a sign that the person driving the car might have a blood alcohol content level of .08 or higher.
- Drunk drivers have a lot of trouble gauging when to apply their brakes. Erratic brake application or traveling at speeds that don't match the current traffic flow are warning signs of possible driver impairment.
- Alcohol can impair cognitive abilities, which, in turn, can cause depth perception problems. You might notice this in a driver if he or she scrunches up in the driver's seat with a tight grip on the steering wheel, squinting toward the windshield.
- Any vehicle that is weaving left to right or veering out of its lane is evidence that the driver might be dealing with distraction or intoxication.
If you can pull over without placing yourself or others at risk, it's a good idea to do so. Many South Carolina travelers dial 911 to report suspected drunk drivers. There's not always time to do such things, however, because collisions can happen quite suddenly.
If you suffer injury in a drunk driving crash
Post-accident care should always include medical treatment. Even if you think you're okay, it's best to seek medical attention because you might not be fully aware of your condition. Many accident injuries are internal or do not present symptoms right away. When a drunk driver is the cause of your injuries, South Carolina law states that you may pursue justice in a civil court.