Texas Traffic Crisis: At Least One Fatality per Day for 21 Years
There are streaks no state in America wants to promote or even acknowledge, and Texas’ streak of at least one traffic death per day for 21 years is one of those. In 2021, at least 11 people have died each day on Texas roadways. The Austin car accident lawyers of Loewy Law Firm want to see the fatality numbers go down and stay down.
There have been over 4,000 traffic deaths in 2021, after 3,896 deaths in 2020. There have been over 70,000 fatalities during that 21-year streak.
The Texas Department of Transportation wants to break that streak as soon as possible, and they recognize that doing so requires the cooperation of TxDOT, the community, and individual drivers.
According to a TxDOT database, of the Texas road fatalities recorded in 2021:
- 1,174 people died in speeding accidents
- 315 people died in distracted driving accidents
- 555 pedestrians died in fatal traffic accidents
- 889 people died because they weren’t wearing seatbelts
Beginning in 2015, TxDOT has run an “EndTheStreak” initiative to educate the population about distracted driving, speeding, and DUI. Unfortunately, the data is going in the wrong direction. Over 1600 people died in accidents in the first five months of 2021, a 14 percent increase over 2020. The data for 2021 is even worse: 1368 people died on Texas roads and highways between the months of January and April, a 24 percent increase over 2020.
While the Texas population has grown significantly, which could correlate to more fatal accidents, Texas roads are greatly improved and safer to drive on in general. But the accident numbers just keep going up.
There appears to be a relationship nationally between the pandemic and increased traffic accidents. Traffic accidents in the United States surged 13 percent in 2020, even with coronavirus shutdowns around the country. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the factors that contributed to the surge included speeding, distracted driving, and failure to wear a seatbelt. Alcohol-related crashes were up nine percent, too.
Perhaps the reduced traffic on so many roads due to pandemic-related shutdowns and other factors led people to get complacent and take greater risks while driving. It seems that the number of traffic accidents should have decreased in the pandemic, instead of increasing.
The Most Dangerous Intersections in Austin, TX
Where are most of our local accidents occurring? In our most dangerous intersections. Be extra cautious when driving through:
Parmer and North Lamar. There are many rear-end collisions at this intersection as many people get off the I-35 and turn right into a line of traffic. They hit their brakes but the car behind them cannot stop in time.
Cesar Chavez and I-35. This intersection has it all: lots of downtown traffic and pedestrians going in and out of neighborhood bars.
Trinity and East 7th Street. This is Texas’s most dangerous crossroads. The city is studying what they can do to reduce accidents with pedestrians.
The Austin car accident attorneys of Loewy Law Firm are here for you. If you get in an accident, as a driver, passenger, or pedestrian that wasn’t your fault, call us first. We will consult with you about your options to pursue compensation for your accident-related injuries and losses. Call us at (512) 280-0800.