Gilberto Lopez-Adame Killed in Single-Vehicle Accident on I-20 in Midland, TX
Midland, TX -- March 28, 2022, 33-year-old Gilberto Lopez-Adame was killed in a single-vehicle accident on Interstate 20 in Midland.
Authorities say the incident happened around 12:15 a.m. on I-20 near South Loop 250. Preliminary investigation suggests Lopez-Adame was driving a GMC Sierra pickup truck west in the main lanes of I-20 when he attempted to exit toward Loop 250. Reports indicate he failed to negotiate the curve of the ramp and the pickup left the road, entering the median and flipping over.
Lopez-Adame was ejected during the rollover and suffered fatal injuries.
No further information is available at this time.
Commentary on Gilberto Lopez-Adame Accident in Midland
Authorities mentioned "failure to maintain lane" as a primary factor in this accident, but also noted that alcohol use may have contributed as well. It's concerning any time that's brought up as a possible factor, but it's also troubling when I see people shrug off a crash like this one and blame the victim as soon as alcohol was mentioned--well before there's any evidence to make that anything but a theory.
That dismissive attitude and victim-blaming don't help anyone, least of all the victim's grieving family. It's always important to keep an open mind and consider all the possible factors in a wreck before making up one's mind. More importantly, though, all the folks ready to just blame the victim and move on may not realize there's another party that may be responsible for these deadly wrecks too. If so, it's important to find that out and ensure they're held accountable for the part they played. But who am I referring to?
Texas dram shop law basically says that a licensed alcohol provider who over-serves an obviously intoxicated person may be liable for damages resulting from that intoxication. Whether it's a bar, restaurant, liquor store, or even a gas station, anyone permitted to sell or serve alcohol in Texas agrees to abide by certain rules because of the dangers posed by serving it in excess to anyone. To become licensed they also accept that there could be consequences if they handle their product recklessly.
When people get hurt because a bar gets its priorities skewed and illegally over-serves its customers, valuing bigger tabs over public safety, every possible step should be taken to make sure they're held accountable. Dram shop is a valuable tool available to victims and families to make sure that happens, while also helping them seek badly-needed help if they or a loved one were hurt as a result of that recklessness.
With all that said, alcohol use is only a theory here. Blood test results will shed more light on that one way or the other, but depending on what they reveal the job may not be done where police left off.