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301 Billion Reasons To Not Overserve Alcohol

If a drunk driver has injured you or a loved one, reach out to a Houston personal injury attorney today – like the lawyers at Houston Injury Lawyers, PLLC. They will provide you with a free and confidential consultation.

On November 12, 2017, in South Padre Island, an unimaginable tragedy occurred at the intersection of Kostoryz Road and South Padre Island Drive. But before we get there, let’s dive into the background of what happened. 


On that Tuesday night in November, a customer walked into Beer Belly’s Sports Bar. That night, the customer left the Bar with a 0.263 blood alcohol concentration (BAC). The legal limit for a BAC when driving in Texas is 0.08. The customer was more than three times over the legal limit. According to studies, at a 0.263 BAC, a non-tolerant individual would expect to experience vomiting, incontinence, and symptoms of alcohol intoxication. At 0.15-0.2 BAC, they would have an impairment of vision. ABAC of 0.263 is severe intoxication. There is no good reason for any person to get behind the wheel of a car with a BAC of 0.263.

Further, there is no good reason for any Bar to continue serving a customer showing obvious signs of impairment, such as with motor function, speech, and balance. Further, one can expect to lower their BAC by about 0.15 every hour after they refrain from drinking. It would have taken this customer over 17 ½ hours to reduce their BAC to 0.00. Based on the allegations in the resulting lawsuit, the customer was served at least 11 alcoholic drinks. A pharmacologist expert at the trial testified that 50% of people with a BAC of 0.3 would be rendered unconscious. 


After consuming at least 11 alcoholic drinks, the customer left the Bar and then got behind the wheel of a vehicle. While driving, the customer ran a red light while traveling 91mph and caused a fatal car accident. The innocent victims of the tragic accident included a 59-year-old grandmother and her 16-year-old granddaughter. The customer and driver also perished in the accident. The grandmother was experiencing a routine day, picking up her granddaughter from her job at CiCi’s Pizza and on their way home. They didn’t know that night would be their last. With a BAC of 0.263, the customer lacked the skill necessary to avoid the collision. 


The victims’ families filed a lawsuit against Beer Belly’s Sports Bar since the Bar overserved the customer and led to the fatal car accident. The Dram Shop Act outlines liability in Texas if an establishment or social host provides alcohol to guests and an intoxicated guest causes injuries or damages. The law dictates that establishments may not continue to serve alcoholic beverages to visibly intoxicated persons and must also prevent visibly intoxicated persons from driving away from the establishment. This law applies to social events at private residences where hosts serve alcohol.

 The lawsuit made it to a jury trial. And in December 2021, the jury awarded the family of innocent victims $301 Billion in damages. Now, the family won’t ever receive $301 Billion. But the verdict sends a message to other bars in the State of Texas – that they have a responsibility not to overserve their patrons and take steps to prevent their patrons from driving when they are visibly impaired. Failure to do so will result in being held accountable under the law to victims’ families. Beer bellies are now no longer in business. 

If a drunk driver has injured you or a loved one, reach out to a Houston personal injury attorney today – like the lawyers at Houston Injury Lawyers, PLLC. They will provide you with a free and confidential consultation.

At Houston Injury Lawyers, PLLC, our firm focuses the entirety of our time and expertise on representing those who have suffered a personal injury and helping our clients through the entire recovery process – physical, emotional, and financial recovery – from their injuries. We allow our clients to tip the balance of justice into their favor through our years of experience and devotion to our clients. Our care and preparation are core principles and keys to our success. The lawyers at Houston Injury Lawyers, PLLC, can help you navigate this issue and answer any questions that you may have. If you would like to speak to someone about your particular situation or for a free and confidential consultation, call our office at (713) 366-HURT (4878) today or visit us online

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