Elijah Rangel Killed in Possible DWI Accident on Beaumont Highway in Harris County, TX
UPDATE (February 14, 2023): Recent details identified the man killed in the accident as Elijah Rangel. Investigations into the other driver's possible intoxication are ongoing as that driver remains in the hospital. Right now, no further information is available.
This accident, like many before it, has rekindled local media outlets to talk about the large number of intoxication accidents that happen in Harris County. It's something I've talked about consistently for years not just when it comes to the greater Houston area but in Texas as a whole. Even below, my original thoughts on this awful event were to help the community understand what Texas law is doing about deadly wrecks of this nature.
It's important folks take these cautions to heart and understand that the family they're seeing here in the news is far from the first, and they'll be far from the last to go through such hardships. But that only makes it more crucial to understand their rights and the tools available to the communities around Texas that continue to struggle against the scourge of intoxicated driving.
Harris County, TX -- February 4, 2023, one person killed due to an accident on Beaumont Highway which may have involved intoxication.
Authorities released a statement saying the incident happened at around 5:49 a.m. in the 14900 block of Beaumont Highway. It appears a man was in a Toyota Tacoma traveling eastbound along Beaumont highway at the time. Police say an oncoming GMC Sierra failed to yield, causing the vehicles to collide.
As a result of the collision, the driver of the Toyota succumbed to fatal injuries. Police said the GMC driver showed signs of intoxication, but additional details cannot be confirmed at this time.
Sadly, if it turns out this was an intoxicated driving accident, it would be the norm as far as Harris County is concerned. I talk to folks down there all the time about these sorts of accidents, particularly ones involving alcohol. As big a problem as it is in Houston and its surrounding communities, it's no wonder people demand action from the authorities and their local officials to crack down on it more. But that should mean more than just harsh consequences for drivers.
Action must also be taken within communities to seek out negligent alcohol providers, as a large portion of accidents like this one involve someone illegally over-served by a bar, club, or restaurant. Those businesses can face fines, suspensions, liability in civil court, and potentially charges for individual employees. Making it clear to businesses that their actions have consequences is only one step in our constant fight against intoxicated driving, but it's a crucial one I don't see utilized often enough.