Cybill Erickson, 1 Other Seriously Injured in Crash on I-45 in Webster, TX
Webster, TX — October 9, 2022, 48-year-old Cybill Erickson and another person were seriously injured in an auto accident on Interstate 45 in Harris County.
Authorities say the incident happened around 12:20 a.m. on I-45 near North Wesley Drive. Preliminary investigation suggests Erickson was a passenger in a northbound Ford Fusion. The car approached a disabled Ford F-150 in the roadway and the driver allegedly failed to control his speed; the Fusion then rear-ended the pickup.
Erickson and the Fusion driver both suffered serious injuries in the crash. The F-150's three occupants reportedly received minor injuries.
Investigators said the Fusion driver showed signs of intoxication and may have admitted to drinking alcohol. When asked how much the driver drank, Erickson allegedly told officers "he had too much."
No further information is available at this time.
Commentary on Cybill Erickson Accident in Webster
If blood tests confirm what officers strongly suspect, the alleged drunk driver may be in for some legal consequences for his choices that night. That seems only fair, but at the same time it's not for me to wag fingers or speculate about what his day in court might look like. Instead, I'd prefer to look at ways to help everyone hurt in the wreck get back on their feet. One of those ways might involve Texas dram shop law.
In a nutshell, dram shop law prohibits licensed alcohol vendors (bars, restaurants, liquor and convenience stores, etc) from selling or serving alcohol to obviously intoxicated customers. If they do so illegally and their customers cause or suffer injuries while under the influence, the business that provided too much to drink may be considered liable for the harm done--and rightly so, as everyone responsible for the victims' injuries should be held accountable.
I'm not saying for certain that a dram shop violation happened here, but will authorities even look into it--particularly seeing how strongly they feel alcohol played a part? Little as I like to say it, my guess would be no. Law enforcement doesn't spend much time on possible negligent over-service, content instead to punish the drunk drivers it produces.
If nobody goes after those businesses they're free to continue endangering their customers and communities. Even worse, the people they hurt are robbed of an important source of help with their recovery. That's why dram shop matters are often put in the hands of independent investigators. Their careful and expert attention could be a big step in getting everyone the help they need and deserve.