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Texas Personal Injury News

Saturday, January 26, 2019

How Do You Prove Intoxication in a Personal Injury Case?

Driving is by no means inherently safe. With human beings operating cars and trucks there leaves much room for error. But when an individual drives while under the influence of alcohol or drugs – both illegal and prescription – their intoxication can have very serious effects on the safety of themselves and others.

Driving While Intoxicated

In Texas, anyone who drives while intoxicated is committing the offense of driving while intoxicated (DWI). If an intoxicated driver causes injury to another individual, the evidence of their intoxication can be used as evidence against them in a personal injury case.

Plaintiff Still Has Burden of Proof

It is important to remember that just because someone intoxicated gets into an accident with another person, he or she is not automatically guilty in civil court. When it comes to a case of negligence, the plaintiff who is suing still carries the burden of proving four elements (duty; breach; causation; damages).

When it comes to proving causation, the plaintiff must still prove that the crash occurred because of the defendant’s conduct, and that conduct caused the plaintiff’s injuries. The defendant can still argue that they were not at fault for the crash, and that the plaintiff either caused the crash, their injuries were not a direct result of the accident, or they contributed to the damages.

NTSB Investigates Crash of Impaired Driver

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) recently released its findings in an investigation of a crash, which occurred in Texas that resulted in 13 fatalities because of a driver under the influence of marijuana and prescription drugs.

The NTSB found that the driver was responsible for the crash due to the fact that he could not safely operate his truck because he was impaired. He was said to be driving erratically before crashing into a church bus that was transporting seniors from a three-day church retreat. The crash killed the bus driver as well as 12 of its 13 passengers.

The Aftermath of the Crash

According to the NTSB there were marijuana cigarettes, over-the-counter, and prescription medication as well as other drug paraphernalia in the truck. The driver also tested positive for marijuana and the sedative, clonazepam, of which he admitted that he had taken twice the prescribed dose. The twenty-year-old driver was then charged with multiple counts of intoxication manslaughter. He is currently awaiting sentencing after pleading no contest.

What To Do if You’ve Been the Victim of a Car Crash with a Drunk Driver

If you have been the victim of a car crash that involved a drunk driver, it is so important that you are compensated for any damages that you sustained from it and that the impaired driver is held accountable. That is why you should contact a knowledgeable and experienced personal injury attorney who can help you to navigate your situation and get you what you deserve.

 


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Chandler, Mathis & Zivley, PC has offices located in Houston and Lufkin Texas and serves clients throughout East Texas as well as many other states.
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