Bradford Hawley, Motorcyclist Injured in Crash on TX-154 in Wood County, TX
Wood County, TX — May 1, 2022, 28-year-old Bradford Hawley and another person were injured in a crash on State Highway 154 in Wood County.
According to reports the incident happened around 10:45 p.m. on TX-154 near Farm to Market Road 515. Preliminary investigation suggests a Yamaha motorcycle was traveling north on the highway as Hawley started to pull his westbound Jeep out of a business parking lot toward southbound TX-154.
The Jeep reportedly pulled straight into the path of the oncoming motorcycle and the two collided in the roadway. After the impact the bike fell over with the rider still seated; Hawley's Jeep traveled off the road and crashed into a portable building by a driveway on the other side.
Hawley and the 27-year-old motorcyclist both suffered serious injuries in the crash. Investigators later determined the rider had consumed alcohol before the accident, and blood tests showed he had a BAC of .205 at the time.
No further information is currently available.
Commentary on Bradford Hawley Accident in Wood County
Based on how the accident was described, I wonder if it's possible that the rider's level of impairment affected his ability to react to the Jeep pulling into his way. That's not in any way to justify the other driver's alleged failure to yield, but if the motorcyclist could reasonably have stopped or steered clear without hitting the Jeep while sober then the alcohol may arguably have played a part in his injuries.
Some may wonder why it even matters that much, but what a lot of people don't realize is that many alcohol-related crashes involve a third party--an "accomplice" of sorts--that too often gets away with its role in getting people hurt. If the rider drank at a local bar and was over-served before the crash, that business might be responsible for both victims' injuries under Texas dram shop law.
Dram shop law basically says alcohol vendors like bars, restaurants, clubs, and stores can't sell or serve drinks to an obviously intoxicated customer. If they do they may be liable if their customer hurts himself or anyone else while under the influence of all those drinks.
The details of this accident make it a little more complicated than an average DWI accident, but further investigation could confirm that the rider's level of intoxication (and the bar that got him there) were influential in the crash and its damage. If so, that business deserves a serious lesson about getting its priorities in order and both people hurt in the crash deserve its help getting back on their feet.