In Crash With Two Intoxicated Drivers, Who Pays?

Date: January 19, 2014
Location: Highway 26,
Names: Justin A. Caputo, Jamie L. France, Zacharry J. Olson

Two drivers face DUII charges after a head on collision on Sunday, December 19, in the early morning.

Police report that Zacharry J. Olson, 18, of Banks was driving his 1997 Honda Civic eastbound in the westbound lane on US Highway 26 when he collided with a 2004 Mazda 3 driven by Jamie L. France, 23, of Redmond.

France and his passenger Justin A. Caputo, 22, of Vernonia suffered injuries in the accident and were taken to Legacy Emanuel Medical Center in Portland. Olson was also injured and was transported to the hospital as well. None of the injuries were reported to be life threatening.

Following their investigation, police charged both drivers with DUII. Olson faced additional charges including third degree assault and fourth degree assault.

Seat belt use was not confirmed as the investigation is ongoing. Airbags did deploy in both vehicles.

The highway had to be closed and a detour was set up during the investigation of the accident. Oregon State Police were assisted by the Oregon Department of Transportation, as well as local fire and police agencies.

We would like to wish all the parties involved in the accident a fast and full recovery from their injuries. Our thoughts are with you during this difficult time.

Drunken driving accidents are tragedies that affect not only the victim, but often the victim’s family and friends as well. These cases are also legally complex and can face very strict time limits (as little as 180 days).

If you have been a victim of a drunk driving accident, you may be able to get compensation in a few ways:

  1. You may be able to file a claim with the auto insurance of the at-fault driver.
  2. You may be able to file a claim with your own insurance (if their insurance does not cover all your damages, it was a hit-and-run crash, or they do not have insurance).
  3. You may be able to file a claim against the establishment or person that supplied the alcohol to the drunk driver through a Dram Shop Notice.

A Dram Shop Notice allows you to hold responsible whoever served and continued to serve alcohol to the drunk driver after they were visibly intoxicated, or whoever served alcohol to someone who is underage. This could be a bar, nightclub, restaurant, or whoever supplied the alcohol.

These establishments are required to properly train and incentivize their employees to act in accordance with the OLCC’s guidelines regarding intoxicated drinkers. They should not be allowed to do otherwise. A Dram Shop Notice is a special letter that tells the establishment that they are being held accountable for failing to follow these guidelines.

But if the proper establishment does not receive the Dram Shop Notice within 180 days, the claim may be forever lost. This very tight time limit destroys many otherwise valid claims. Let an Oregon injury attorney who is familiar with the law regarding drunk driving accidents help you through this difficult time, and get you on your way to recovery.


About Sean DuBois

Sean is a personal injury attorney in Portland, OR. He has been recognized by Super Lawyers Magazine as Oregon Rising Stars for the past four years because of his dedication to justice and fair compensation for his clients. If you need to speak with a lawyer about your injury case, Sean can be reached at 503-222-4411.

Posted on January 23, 2014, in Drunk Driving, Oregon Personal Injury Attorney and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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