Q: What if I am hit by a car while riding or walking drunk?

A: Even if you were riding or walking drunk, it is still possible to recover in a claim for your injuries. Each accident presents with differing circumstances that can affect the outcome in a personal injury claim.

Just as drinking and driving can be deadly, so can drinking and walking. Over a third of the pedestrians killed in 2011 had blood alcohol levels above the legal limit for driving, according to data reported to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration by state highway departments.

“Intoxicated pedestrians frequently cannot fulfill the perceptual, cognitive and physical skills required to cross safely in the complex traffic patterns seen in most urban cities,” wrote New York University School of Medicine researchers in a 2012 review paper in the journal Trauma.

In New York, you will not be charged with driving while intoxicated for riding a bicycle while drunk. The legislature specifically defines the law as applying to the operation of a motor vehicle. That does not mean that you could not be charged with a misdemeanor such as public intoxication or some other form of public endangerment.

If you choose to consume alcoholic beverages, the best policy is to exercise caution and not ride your bicycle or any other mode of transportation to avoid potential legal trouble and danger to both your own health and those of others on the road.

If you are are injured in a car accident while walking, jogging or riding a bicycle, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical expenses and other losses. Skilled legal representation can help make sure you are compensated to the fullest extent possible, whether you choose to pursue a personal injury lawsuit or settle out-of-court. If you are injured in the Capital Region – in Albany, Schenectady, Troy, Clifton Park, Saratoga or elsewhere in the Capital District – please call the personal injury lawyers of Lamarche Safranko Law PLLC  for a free consultation.

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