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Texas Oktoberfest events may prompt increase in drunk driving

While October weather in Texas is not as crisp and cool as it might be on the east coast or states up north, many people still enjoy going to fall festivals. Oktoberfest gatherings often feature specially crafted beers. If you like a good German stout now and then, you might consider attending an autumn festival in your area.

As in all cases when large crowds gather in public, Oktoberfest can pose a personal safety risk. For instance, you might be at risk for personal injury in the parking lot if a festival-goer has had too much to drink and gets behind the wheel of a car to drive.

Reducing drunk driving risks at festivals

You may be the type of person who either completely abstains from consuming alcohol if you know you're going to have to drive or arranges ahead of time for transportation. It's true that German-style beers, which most Oktoberfest venues serve, have higher alcohol content than other beers. That's one of many reasons it often pays to schedule a ride share or designate a driver who agrees to drink only non-alcoholic beverages for the outing.

There are often support tents at festivals

Oktoberfest events and other festivals often have emergency medical crews on hand. Those who work in medical tents can help you recover if you feel you have exceeded a safe (or legal) limit of alcohol for driving. Stopping by one of these tents is often the swiftest, most convenient way to get a drink of water and other medical attention as needed.

Be careful of reckless drivers

You cannot investigate every person at an Oktoberfest gathering to make sure he or she is able to legally operate a motor vehicle. First of all, it's not your job (unless you happen to be an on-duty security guard or police officer at the festival). Secondly, you have no way of knowing who's been drinking and who hasn't.

Staying alert and being especially cautious when you're driving into or out of the parking lot at a festival, as well as when navigating nearby roadways, is often the best preventative care you can take to avoid serious injury. If you notice a driver who shows signs of possible intoxication, you'll want to keep as much distance as possible between yourself and his or her vehicle.

If a collision occurs

If a motor vehicle collision lands you in the hospital here in Texas, it might be some time before you're well enough to attend another public festival. In fact, depending on the severity of your injuries, you might have to take a lot of time off work during recovery. Such situations often cause accident victims tremendous financial distress. The state understands this, which is why it allows those who suffer injury because of drunk drivers to seek financial recovery for damages in court.

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Brian Jensen

Representation in the Houston Area with 2 Convenient Locations:

Bellaire Office
Frost Bank Building
6750 West Loop South
Suite 800
Bellaire, TX 77401

Toll Free: 877-297-7414
Phone: 832-460-3366
Fax: 713-665-6818
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14439 Twisted Oak Lane
Houston, TX 77079

Toll Free: 877-297-7414
Phone: 832-460-3366
Fax: 713-665-6818
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