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Texas's Roads Are The Country's Most Dangerous

Texas's highways are the nation's most deadly. According to statistics recently released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the 3,757 fatalities on our roads in 2015 were the most recorded in any state. We also lead the country in alcohol-related driving deaths.

Unfortunately, trends indicate that the situation is only getting worse. A report in Insurance Journal notes that traffic injuries and fatalities have increased 20 percent in Texas since 2011. The effects are felt across a range of sectors. Lost working hours figure as one of the main drags on our state's economy. Likewise, many victims find themselves in dire financial straits - unable to work and collect their salaries, while medical bills mount higher and higher.

Why Are There So Many Serious Crashes?

A number of factors contribute to the death toll. These include:

  • Higher speed limits: Many parts of the state have unusually high speed limits; portions of Highway 130, for example, have posted limits of 80 and 85 miles per hour. As the state's population continues to grow, though, the permissive speeding becomes more and more of a risk factor.
  • Seat belt negligence: The NHTSA report indicates that nearly half of all fatality victims were not wearing seat belts at the time of the crash.
  • Distracted driving: Roughly 25 percent of auto accidents result from texting-and-driving. This is as true in Texas as anywhere else. As stated by an officer of the Houston Police Department Traffic Enforcement Division, "There are no excuses for impaired driving...and distracted driving is just as dangerous as impaired driving."
  • Nationwide trends: Texas is not the only state where accidents are on the rise. Insurance Journal reports that, across the nation, there has been a "noticeable increase automobile passenger deaths, as well as [deaths to] motorcyclists, bicyclists and pedestrians." Nevertheless, Texas holds the unwanted distinction of having the most fatalities annually.

How To Avoid Calamity

In addition to the fatalities, Texas sees more than 250,000 road-related injuries in an average year. This is no longer an anomaly, but an annual tragedy.

What's clear is that drivers must take precautions to stay safe. The necessary steps, thankfully, are obvious ones. Don't drink and drive. Don't text-and-drive. Don't speed. Wear a seat belt. And, when tragedy strikes, find an attorney who can protect your interests and your rights and help obtain the compensation you need to recover.

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