One Injured in Crash with Wrong-Way Vehicle on US-287 in Moore County, TX
Moore County, TX -- December 19, 2021, a 7-year-old child was seriously injured in a collision with an alleged DWI driver on U.S. Highway 287 in Moore County.
Authorities say the incident happened around 4:50 a.m. on US-287 near mile marker 54. Preliminary investigation suggests a Chevrolet Cruze was traveling south in the northbound lanes of the highway, against traffic, when it struck a Ford Focus head-on. After the impact the Ford swerved into the median and overturned.
A juvenile in the Ford suffered serious injuries in the crash. The driver reportedly received minor injuries, while the Chevy driver was unhurt.
Police detected signs of intoxication on the Chevy driver at the scene. Breathalyzer tests showed he had a blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) of approximately .170.
No further information is currently available.
Commentary on Wrong-Way Accident on US-287 in Moore County
Police were apparently able to confirm with reasonable certainty that their suspect was intoxicated by alcohol. Breathalyzers have a higher margin of error than blood tests, but even making that allowance it seems quite probable the wrong-way driver exceeded the legal limit of .08.
With a main factor of the crash identified and the suspect facing several potential charges some may feel that more or less closes the matter, but criminal punishment does little to help injured victims with the cost and hardship of recovery. However, that may be addressed in a manner some aren't aware of: The driver may not be the only one legally responsible for the damage caused in Moore County.
People are often tempted to lay the whole burden of a DWI crash on the driver, but what about whoever provided his alcohol? If he was sold or served drinks despite clearly being past his limits, the business that did so may have broken the law. Texas dram shop law says that an alcohol provider who over-serves an obviously intoxicated customer may be liable for injuries caused by that person while they are under the influence. If the wrong-way driver was over-served somewhere before the accident, the business that did so may have a duty to help the injured victims get back on their feet.
Despite how helpful dram shop claims could be for many victims, folks often aren't aware that area of the law exists. That's why I write about it when I get wind of accidents where it might apply. I'm not saying I know for sure that it does; most bars follow the rules and not every DWI case involves a dram shop violation, but the possibility should be looked into when alcohol use seems to be tied to serious injuries.