Amarillo, TX — There was a single-car wreck reported last Wednesday evening in the downtown area of Amarillo that left a woman with injuries. The woman, 25, is also facing DWI charges, according to the police. The accident happened at about 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, when the 25-year old woman crashed her Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo into a traffic signal pole.
This was at the intersection of Tyler Street and SW Sixth Avenue, they said.
The woman had been driving her Jeep, which was white, east on SW Sixth Avenue when she lost control at Tyler Street and swerved off the road, hitting a traffic signal pole.
No other cars were involved, but ambulances were called and the woman was rushed to a hospital to be treated. The accident also resulted in the woman being charged DWI, as police think she was intoxicated.
Map of the Accident
View from the Road
I won’t pretend to know much about what happened here, but if this woman was under the influence of alcohol at the time and had also been drinking somewhere (like a bar) that night, then this accident may not be entirely her fault. Some of you are going to automatically “tune out” here because I’m talking like a lawyer, but let me explain a little bit about how Texas law handles alcohol-related accidents when someone is hurt as a result.
The Texas Dram Shop Act of 1987 changed things a bit for bars, saying that they could now be held responsible for drunk driving accidents where their customers got into accidents that injured either themselves or others. The idea was to hold bars accountable for those accidents in the same way drunk drivers were being held accountable. For bars that sold alcohol to people who were obviously intoxicated or who were a danger to themselves & others, the courts held that they (the bars) could be held civilly liable for any injuries or death caused as a result of any accident.
Some people get a little fired up over this, but I think it’s exceedingly fair to the bars. To file suit against a bar, you have to prove they knew or should have known that the customer they were serving was intoxicated. It’s not as if bars are automatically held responsible for other people’s mistakes, think of them as accomplices to the same crime.
I don’t know much about this situation, again, but I would not be quick to assume this young woman is entirely to blame for what happened because, odds are, there are things we’re not seeing here.
— Grossman Law Offices