Drunk driving accidents kill hundreds and injure thousands more each year in Texas. It’s never acceptable to drive while intoxicated. If someone decides to get behind the wheel after consuming alcohol and causes a crash, the law in Texas allows the victim or their families to hold them accountable. 

Texas Drunk Driving Accident Statistics

Here are a few facts from the Texas Department of Transportation about drunk driving accidents in 2020:

  • There were 23,157 drunk driving accidents across Texas. These crashes resulted in 958 deaths and 2,113 suspected serious injuries.
  • There were 3,544 drunk driving accidents recorded in Harris County, where Houston is located. These crashes resulted in 132 deaths and 235 suspected serious injuries.
  • There were more drunk driving crashes (24,714), fewer deaths (914), and more suspected serious injuries (2,154) statewide in 2019 compared to 2020.

What Does BAC Mean?

You’ve probably heard the term “BAC” a lot when people talk about Texas drunk driving accidents. BAC stands for blood-alcohol concentration, which measures the amount of alcohol in your body. BAC is usually expressed as a percentage, and 0.08 percent is the legal limit for any driver 21 and over in Texas. If you register a BAC in Texas of 0.08 percent or higher on a blood or breath test, you can be found legally intoxicated. For those under 21, having any amount of alcohol in their system while driving is illegal.

Drunk Driving Penalties in Texas

According to the Texas Department of Transportation, the penalties for drunk driving are as follows:

  • First offense —
    • Up to $2,000 in fines
    • Between three and 180 days in jail
    • Loss of your driver’s license for up to one year
  • Second offense —
    • Up to $4,000 in fines
    • One month to one year in jail
    • Loss of your driver’s license for up to two years
  • Third offense — 
    • Up to $10,000 in fines
    • Two to 10 years in prison
    • Loss of your driver’s license for up to two years

These are the baseline penalties for drunk driving in Texas. If a drunk driver injures or kills someone in an accident, or if they’re driving with a child passenger, the potential penalties can increase dramatically.

Who’s Liable for a Drunk Driving Crash?

In addition to the drunk driver, other parties could also be liable for a drunk driving crash. For instance, Texas’ dram shop law allows DUI crash victims to hold bars, liquor stores, and other establishments that sell alcohol liable if they served a patron who was visibly intoxicated or a minor.

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With the help of an experienced car accident lawyer in Houston, it could be possible to identify any responsible parties and hold them accountable for the harm you’ve suffered. 

How a Lawyer Can Help After a Drunk Driving Accident

Here are a few things a lawyer can do to help you after a Texas drunk driving accident:

  • Gather evidence to establish liability on the part of the drunk driver or another party
  • Handle communication and settlement negotiations with the insurance companies for the liable parties
  • Help you find the right doctors and other specialists to assist you in recovering from the accident
  • Develop a strategy to help you recover maximum compensation for your losses
  • Represent you in court if your case goes to trial

Potential Compensation After a Drunk Driving Crash

Your injuries and other losses in a drunk driving accident can be substantial. A lawyer can help you seek compensation for what you’ve lost, which might include compensation for:

  • Medical bills
  • Lost income
  • Reduced earning potential
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress
  • Damaged personal property

Contact The Law Offices of Hilda Sibrian™ Today

If you were injured in a Houston car crash caused by a drunk driver, The Law Offices of Hilda Sibrian™ can help. The Houston drunk driving accident lawyers at The Law Offices of Hilda Sibrian™ provide aggressive legal representation for individuals injured in drunk driving accidents. If a drunk driver injured you, contact us right away for a free initial consultation.