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The Texas Department of Transportation (DOT) has launched a new campaign, Faces of Drunk Driving, to “drive” home the impact of drunk driving. The goal of the initiative is to show the dangerous reality of driving intoxicated or riding with a drunk driver.

I encourage all of you to visit the “Faces of Drunk Driving” website and read Sean Carter’s story. Seven years ago, 22-year-old Sean and some friends were drinking. Sean knew he was too intoxicated to drive, but got in a vehicle driven by his friend who was even more intoxicated. When the driver lost control of his vehicle, he slammed into a tree on the passenger side. Sean suffered a traumatic brain injury and broken bones including a shattered pelvis, broken arm, broken femur and tailbone. He was also placed on a ventilator because of a collapsed lung. Everyday actions – speaking and walking – easily taken for granted, have been taken away from a night of drinking and driving.

Through all this, Sean is still a model, but now a role model. He and his mom travel the country to educate others about the dangers of alcohol and driving. Sean uses a computer and unique wheelchair that allows him to achieve a standing position (a photo can be found on the “Faces of Drunk Driving” website). This video, depicting the early days following the accident, plays during the presentation.

“How would you like to be 22-years old and have to depend on your mother for everything?” says Sean’s mom. “We hope that these images, however uncomfortable they may be, will keep you from making the same mistakes as Sean.”

This is real folks; this is a real example of the life-long consequences of drinking and driving. Every time a major holiday roles around, more motorists will drink and drive causing serious injury or death to innocent victims and themselves. The Fourth of July is typically one of the most dangerous times of year for alcohol-related crashes. Be responsible this holiday and don’t drink and drive or get in a vehicle with a drunk driver. And, if you or someone you love is the victim of a drunk driver and think others could benefit from hearing your story, “Faces of Drunk Driving” would like to hear from you.

Mark Bello has thirty-five years experience as a trial lawyer and thirteen years as an underwriter and situational analyst in the lawsuit funding industry. He is the owner and founder of Lawsuit Financial Corporation which helps provide legal finance cash flow solutions and consulting when necessities of life litigation funding is needed by a plaintiff involved in pending, personal injury, litigation. Bello is a Justice Pac member of the American Association for Justice, Sustaining and Justice Pac member of the Michigan Association for Justice, Member of Public Justice and Public Citizen, Business Associate of the Florida, Mississippi, Connecticut, Texas, and Tennessee Associations for Justice, and Consumers Attorneys of California, member of the American Bar Association, the State Bar of Michigan and the Injury Board.

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