Drunk drivers cause some of the most catastrophic and devastating car accidents on Texas roads. Any person who gets into a car with a drunk driver is putting his or her life at risk. It is not uncommon for intoxicated drivers to travel at high rates of speed, cross the medians or run off the roadways and crash into utility poles or trees.
A 27-year-old driver was arrested and locked up after causing a fatal one-vehicle crash in Austin on a recent Sunday morning. According to an Austin police affidavit, officers responded to the accident scene to find a vehicle on its side and wrapped around a tree. The passenger was reportedly trapped inside the vehicle.
Police report that the driver claimed to have swerved to avoid hitting a dog in the road. He was allegedly traveling at 45 mph in an area in which the speed limit is 30 mph. The passenger was extricated, but she was declared dead at the accident scene. The driver’s injuries were not life-threatening, and he was taken to a hospital where officers noticed a strong alcohol odor along with slurred speech and glassy, bloodshot eyes. A field sobriety test confirmed their suspicion of intoxication.
The driver was charged with vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated. In addition to the criminal charges, this driver may have to face a wrongful death lawsuit in a Texas civil court. The surviving family members of the passenger who lost her life as the result of this alleged drunk driver’s negligence are entitled to pursue recovery of damages. Obtaining a monetary judgment to cover all documented financial and other losses may be tricky, and the guidance and support of an experienced attorney may be a great help.
Source: keyetv.com, “Man charged with intoxication manslaughter in fatal SW Austin crash“, Feb. 15, 2016