Since 2000, over 67,000 people have died on Texas roads. There has not been any slowing down in this trend of fatalities as the daily average is approximately 10 deaths per day. Studies and statistics on this trend show that at least 90% of all of these fatalities were preventable and that fatalities occur both in metro and rural areas across Texas at high rates.
Last month, the family of a deceased California man filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Tesla when the vehicle's self-driving systems failed to detect a concrete median, causing the vehicle to accelerate into the barrier. This incident is just one of many cases involving victims injured due to self-driving or "autonomous vehicles."
In our complex modern society, with many and varied governmental activities, employees working for governmental units often injure citizens through their negligence. A common example occurs when a government employee causes a motor vehicle collision.
Like motor vehicle collisions, dog bite cases are not uncommon. Just as drivers are held responsible for the injuries they cause if they negligently cause a wreck, dog owners are held responsible if their dog bites someone due to the owner's negligence or if the dog is known to be "vicious, dangerous or mischievous." However, one of the more bizarre outcomes of a dog bite case was seen recently. The Texas Supreme Court dismissed the case under a constitutional doctrine that most of the public has never heard of and even most lawyers would only vaguely remember from their first year of law school-the "political question" doctrine.
On Friday night, an SUV driven by 27-year-old Jonathan Mendez was allegedly involved in a minor collision. It happened at about 9:30 p.m., near the intersection of Hempstead Highway and West Tidwell Road. Rather than stop and provide information, Mendez reportedly sped away from the scene. Later, at the intersection of Leghorn Street and Guhn Road, he lost control of the vehicle. He left the roadway and hit a tree, killing his female passenger. Mendez was taken to the hospital, and now he faces charges of intoxicated manslaughter for the death of the passenger.
A deadly motor vehicle collision occurred in the early morning hours of Monday, and police are investigating to determine if alcohol was involved.
This was a deadly weekend on area roadways. At least four people died in vehicle-related incidents. And, recent media reports indicate that more than forty drivers were charged in March with felony dwi.