Tough lawyers for tough cases.

What to Do if You Suspect a High Driver Caused an Accident

November 7, 2023Auto Accident

Driving under the influence (DUI) of drugs is against the law in Colorado. This includes drugs that are legal or have been prescribed by a doctor, such as medical marijuana. If the drug creates a “high” effect that impairs a driver, he or she can be found guilty of DUI. If you suspect that you were hit by a high driver, take the following steps to seek financial compensation.

Ensure Your Safety

Put your health and safety, as well as that of your passengers and others at the accident scene, first. Pull your vehicle over in a safe location as close to the scene as possible but out of the way of traffic. Check yourself and everyone else involved in the crash for injuries.

Call Emergency Services

In Colorado, the law requires drivers to report car accidents that result in injuries, deaths or property damage. It is also important to report an accident if you suspect the other driver is under the influence of drugs or alcohol. The police can investigate and may make an arrest for DUI. Having a police report can provide important evidence during a car accident claim.

Recognize the Signs of High Driving

Statistics show that around 11.7 million people drove under the influence of drugs in 2021. Someone who is driving while high may exhibit certain signs, such as slurred speech, bloodshot eyes, confusion or impaired cognitive functioning, dizziness or trouble balancing, hallucinations, and the smell of marijuana. If the driver was driving erratically leading up to the crash, this can also point to impairment. If you have reason to believe the other driver is high, notify the police.

Do Not Confront the High Driver

It is important not to confront the driver you suspect of driving high. He or she could be dangerous or unpredictable while under the influence of an unknown substance. Instead, call 911 and allow the police to deal with the driver for you. When the police arrive, give them your version of events and state why you suspect the other driver is high.

Gather Information and Evidence

If you can, take photographs and videos while you are still at the scene. Gather information about the other driver, including his or her name, contact information and insurance information. You may need to go through the police if you do not wish to deal directly with the suspected impaired driver yourself. Document the names of any eyewitnesses, as well.

Get Medical Care

If you have not already done so, get medical care by going to a hospital immediately upon leaving the scene of the crash. Prompt medical care is crucial for demonstrating to an insurance company that you attempted to mitigate your injuries. Follow your doctor’s treatment plan and request copies of your medical records.

Consult With an Attorney

Before you begin the insurance claims process, contact a Denver car accident lawyer to discuss your rights. You may need an attorney to help you prove that the other driver was high to qualify for insurance coverage. Evidence of impairment to use in your claim may include:

  • Chemical or blood drug tests
  • Drugs or drug paraphernalia found in the other driver’s vehicle at the time of the accident
  • The driver’s criminal history or record of drug-related offenses
  • Witnesses’ descriptions of the other driver’s behaviors

Proof that the other driver was impaired can help you achieve a fair settlement from that driver’s car insurance company. An experienced personal injury attorney can investigate the crash, gather evidence and take other action to establish fault in a crash involving a high driver. Consult with an attorney as soon as possible to begin your claim.