One Hurt in Accident at Abrams Road & Forest Lane in Dallas, TX
Dallas, TX -- A suspected alcohol related crash in the area of Dallas, TX left an unidentified person with injuries Saturday, February 25, 2017.
The incident took place at Abrams Road and Forest Lane around 5 a.m.
The details of the incident are sparse. According to reports, a Chevy pickup crashed into a Toyota. The driver of the pickup allegedly fled the scene of the incident, but was found a short time later. He has since been arrested and charged with intoxication assault and failure to stop and render aid.
Further information, including the driver's identity and current condition, may become known as the investigation concludes.
The investigation into the incident is currently underway.
map of the area
I have little doubt the general public has a pretty good understanding of how illegal drunk driving is. But, what is often overlooked is the illegality of over-service by drinking establishments. There's no question that people that choose to drink and drive do so with the knowledge that their choices are not only unsafe, but against the law. But, when these individuals drink at their preferred watering hole, the bar that serves them takes on the duty to so responsibly.
The report claims this accident took place around 5 a.m. Now, I understand this is a few hours after most bars have asked their patrons to finish up their drinks and head home. However, does this mean the suspected driver was not at a bar prior to the incident? Not necessarily. The fact is it doesn't take much to serve someone enough alcohol to leave them drunk several hours after a bar closes.
According to the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission, for an individual to be considered intoxicated, their Blood Alcohol Content must amount to 0.08 or above. Let's say, hypothetically, the driver in this case weighed approximately 140 lbs. If he consumed three drinks in the space of an hour--one drink being 1.5 0z. of 80 proof liquor, 12 oz. beer (4.5% ABV), or 5 oz. wine (12% ABV)--he would, by law, be considered intoxicated. Even considering the fact that this number diminishes by .015 % per hour, it's still fairly easy to get an average-sized man drunk enough to stay drunk hours later.
How much would someone have had to drink in order to be drunk 3 hours after last call? Not as much as you think. Our hypothetical 140 lb. man would only need to consume 6 drinks in an hour to be drunk 3 hours later. The point is, it is not hard for bars to over-serve guests to the point that they're intoxicated long after they've left. In fact, we've handled cases where a person was over-served so badly that they would have needed 12 hours of recovery to legally drive a vehicle.
How is all this significant? Let's say the investigation finds the accused was at a bar in the hours leading up to the crash. According to the law in Texas, the victim in this case may have a cause of action against the establishment. This is because lawmakers in Austin passed what is known as dram shop law. The law states that bars that illegally serve already intoxicated individuals may be held liable when these individuals go on to injure others.
The report claims the driver has been charged with multiple offenses related to the accident. If the driver of the offending car in this accident was illegally over-served before the crash, shouldn't the bar face the same consequences as the driver? If the law doesn't reward getaway drivers in bank robberies, why should bars be rewarded for aiding drunk drivers?
--Grossman Law Offices