Widows of motorcyclists suing bar for over-serving drunk driver

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Two motorcyclists from New Jersey were killed and four other were injured in a drunk driving accident last summer in Bangor.

Newspaper reports indicate the driver of a pick-up truck was speeding on Route 512 when he crossed the center lane and struck a group of motorcyclists. Along with the driver of the pick-up, three taverns have been named in a lawsuit filed by the widows of the motorcyclists and the other motorcyclists injured in the crash. The complaint alleges that the taverns over-served the drunk driver when he was already visibly intoxicated, contributing to the crash.

The seven motorcyclists involved in the crash were members of the Last Chance Motorcycle club, a New Jersey based motorcycle group. The police said that the driver of the truck had three beers at the first bar and four to five drinks at another prior to the accident. The suit filed by the widows and injured motorcyclists alleges that the employees of the bars should have known the driver was intoxicated and were negligent in continuing to serve him.

Liability For Servers

Drunk driving is a serious offense and can cause devastation for families injured by those drinking and driving. New Jersey provides liability for bars that serve the drunk driver in certain instances under the “New Jersey Licensed Alcoholic Beverage Server Fair Liability Act.”

There are certain limitations under this Act to find liability for a bar. For example, one requirement is that the server must have been negligent in serving the drunk driver. Under this particular Act, negligence means that the server served the drunk driver when the driver was visibly intoxicated. Negligence can also mean that the server served a minor when the server “knew, or reasonably should have known,” that the person served was a minor. In this case, the widows and injured motorcyclists are claiming that the servers served the drunk driver despite his visible signs of intoxication.

The law surrounding bar server liability is very complicated and if you or a loved one has been injured by a drunk driver and believe that the bar over-served the driver, contacting a personal injury attorney is crucial to determining your legal rights.