Driving under the influence is one of the most prominent dangers facing drivers in West Virginia. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 10,142 victims lost their lives in traffic accidents involving intoxicated drivers in 2019 alone. This equates to about 28 deaths every day. You may be able to protect yourself from getting into a collision with a drunk driver by learning how to recognize the signs of a driver that is impaired.

Weaving in and Out of Traffic

A driver drifting in and out of multiple lanes is a common sign of intoxication. Alcohol in the bloodstream can impair a driver’s vision, muscle control, strength and cognitive function. All of this can lead to a driver being unable to stay within his or her own lane. The driver may be unable to concentrate on the road, see the lines or control the motor vehicle to stay within the lines. This can result in tailgating, unsafe lane changes, the failure to yield and related accidents.

Breaking the Law

Alcohol impairs a driver’s judgment and reasoning, often resulting in broken traffic laws such as speeding, running a red light and driving the wrong way on a one-way street. The drunk driver may be unaware that he or she is breaking a rule or may be operating the vehicle recklessly due to diminished self-control. If you notice a driver is violating roadway rules, this could be a sign that the driver is under the influence of drugs or alcohol and needs to be reported to the police.


Speeding is one of the most dangerous outcomes of driving under the influence of alcohol. Many drunk drivers are prone to speeding due to poor decision-making, recklessness brought on by the alcohol, peer pressure, confusion, drag racing and the inability to control the car. If you notice a driver excessively speeding or fluctuating his or her speed unusually often, this could be a sign of alcohol impairment.

Abrupt Stops

When a driver consumes alcohol, his or her reflexes and reaction times are reduced. This can result in the drunk driver tailgating other drivers and coming to abrupt stops. The driver’s ability to concentrate, pay attention and react to changing roadway situations will all be compromised. This can make the driver unable to properly control the brake and gas pedals, as well as make a sound decision about when to hit the brakes.

What to Do if You Encounter a Drunk Driver

If you suspect that a driver you are sharing the road with in West Virginia is drunk or under the influence of drugs, keep a safe distance and call 911 using your cell phone immediately. Give the police officer a description of the drunk driver’s vehicle, including the make, model and color. Tell the officer what road you are on and what direction you’re heading to help the police track down the drunk driver and make a traffic stop.

If you have the driver’s license plate numbers, give these to the cops as well. However, don’t put yourself in danger by trying to get closer to the drunk driver to read the plate numbers. Never try to follow a driver that you believe is drunk. Your personal safety is paramount in this dangerous situation. Keep a safe distance from the drunk driver and do not try to stop or approach the driver. Once you have notified the police, you have done your part and can continue to your destination.

If you get into a car accident with a drunk driver, you will need to report the crash to the police and collect information, such as the driver’s name and insurer. Then, you must cooperate with an insurance company’s investigation of the collision to pursue financial compensation from the drunk driver’s policy. You may be able to use the arrest of the driver or a DUI conviction as evidence for your insurance claim. Contact a drunk driving attorney in West Virginia for assistance with the claims process right away.

Attorney Timothy Manchin established the Manchin Injury Law Group in 2011 after his law partner of more than 25 years became a West Virginia circuit court judge. His focus is on helping individual clients and entire families victimized by negligent acts.

  • Taylor Downs was easy to talk to (I do not speak the legal language well!) and was very upfront and honest about the entire process of my case. He kept me updated as the case progressed, and answered my relentless questions. The end result was a favorable settlement that I’m not sure could have been any better with anyone else. In short, go see Taylor if you have a case. Don’t be intimidated to go seek his help, he won’t blow your brains out with “legal speak”.


  • Being referred to Taylor was the best thing I could have asked for. Taylor and staff are very easy to talk to. I would highly recommend them to anyone.


  • If I ever have to go through it again I would definetly call Taylor right away. The group was so helpful through my situation and handled everything that needed to be done. They made a stressful situation a stress free situation. With Taylor you dont have to worry about one thing. Definietly would recomend to anyone.

    - TAYLOR G.

  • Efficient, knowledgeable, and friendly.


  • Taylor and Tim helped make a difficult moment in life, a little more bearable. Easy to communicate with and informative. I will absolutely recommend them to everyone.


  • Manchin Injury Law Group, Took care of me when I got into a car accident while I was pregnant. Very scary moment for a first time mom but thankfully Manchin Injury Law Group had my back and treated me great. They made me feel as if I was part of their family. My son is now 7 Months Old and very happy and healthy. I’m very thankful for them for helping me through everything and getting me what we deserved. I 100% would recommend them to anyone. If I ever have an accident again they will be my number 1 phone call!


  • The support given helped me to feel like I was included in my personal injury case every step of the way. I was informed about the entire process throughout. It was amazing how quick the turn around time was and I would definitely recommend Attorney Timothy J. Manchin to anyone!


  • Taylor and Kelly worked hard on my case so I didn’t have to. Thanks guys!


  • Excellent experience dealing with Manchin Injury Law. They were very responsive, professional and easy to talk to. I did my homework before I hired a lawyer after my accident and I am so glad I found Manchin Injury Law Group. If you are injured, give them a call!


  • Taylor and Tim helped make a difficult moment in life, a little more bearable. Easy to communicate with and informative. I will absolutely recommend them to everyone.


  • Kelly and Taylor did all the hard work so that I didn’t have to. They both cared about my circumstance and got me a nice settlement. Taylor knows what he is doing and I felt comfortable with my case in his hands.


  • Great lawyers. They helped me with a West Virginia case.


  • Such a great experience with Taylor and this firm. Thankful for their diligence and their work on our case. Thank you to all!


  • Had a easy and smooth experience with a great attorney so when you go there make sure you ask for Taylor.


  • My experience at the Manchin Injury Law Group was extremely positive, and I would recommend them to anyone who needs a compassionate and experienced lawyer on their side.


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