Planning to hit the road for the Thanksgiving holiday to visit family and friends or…
Although someone may think they are the safest driver on the road, even the safest driver may still be involved in car accidents. Road traffic crashes are a leading cause of death in the United States, with approximately 246,000 people suffering injuries in traffic accidents. The state of Texas has 16 interest highways and 45 U.S. highways, giving it a total of more than 313,000 miles of public roads. There are some roads in Texas that are more dangerous than others and unfortunately, the Lone Star state is home to some of the most dangerous highways in the nation.
Scary Texas truck accidents by the numbers in 2020
Last year truck accidents in Texas further the state’s reputation as the worst state in America for truck accidents. Here are the facts according to the Texas Department of Transportation:
- 513 Fatal Commercial Vehicle Crashes in Texas
- 581 People Died
- 1245 Serious Injuries
- 7342 Non-Incapacitating Injuries or Suspected Injury
Home of the oil rigs, Texas has the most fatal truck accidents than in any other state. About ½ of all big truck crashes happen on major highways. While interstates and freeways accounted for about 1/3 of all trucking crashes. Minor highways accounted for only 15% of fatal big rig accidents.
The top counties for semi-truck accidents in Texas in 2020 are:
- Harris – 4915 Accidents
- Dallas – 3735 Accidents
- Bexar – 2137 Accidents
- Tarrant – 1781 Accidents
The Most Dangerous Highways in Texas
Interstate 35 (I-35)
Stretching for about 400 miles across Texas, Interstate 35 is one of the busiest interstates in Texas. In 2018, there were 20,401 traffic crashes along 1-35 in Texas, resulting in 153 deaths and 471 serious injuries. Almost half of the Lone Star state lives near I-35 and many motorists traveling along I-35 may encounter the state’s road construction projects.
Interstate 10 (I-10)
Consistently ranking as one of the most dangerous roads in the United States, Interstate 10 runs through three of Texas’ largest cities: El Paso, San Antonio, and Houston. The crowded highway and high-speed driving make excellent conditions for many traffic accidents. Despite efforts of expanding the interstates to 20 total lanes, I-10 remains one of the ugliest and deadliest roads in Houston.
Interstate 45 (I-45)
A study done by National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) examined the interstate from 2010-2016 and concluded it to be the second most dangerous road in Texas. The study revealed that the interstate that goes through Dallas to Galveston had 0.913 death(s) per mile during that time period.
Interstate 37 (I-37)
The study “Falling asleep at the wheel” found that Interstate 37, the only major north-to-south highway from San Antonio to Corpus Christi, has been one of the most dangerous with the most driver deaths caused by falling asleep at the wheel. Unfortunately, commercial drivers are among the most likely to drive drowsy, similar to those who drive semi-trailer trucks, making accidents involving these vehicles extremely dangerous on the 145-mile stretch.
Interstate 290 (I-290)
U.S. 290 is the main freeway between Austin and Houston. According to a report from TxDOT, 2017 was one of the most dangerous years on the highway, with two fatal wrecks and 142 total crashes ranging from non-injury to serious injury just that year.
What are some of the factors that contribute to making them the most Dangerous Highways in Texas?
The following are some of the reasons why the highways are considered dangerous.
- Texting while driving or other forms of distracted driving: Unfortunately traveling at high speeds and having to share the road with other drivers doesn’t stop some individuals from driving in a distracted manner.
- Traveling at high speeds: The chance of being in an accident is increased when traveling at high speeds, giving the driver less time to react to safely maneuver and less time to brake safely.
- Traffic congestions: Due to the increased number of drivers on these highways, the possibilities of being involved in a car accident are increased.
- Weather condition: Depending on the weather, some drivers may not have enough experience to drive in harsher weather such as rain or snow.
- Poor road conditions: No matter how safe someone is being a safe driver, there may be instances in which dangerous road conditions are a major factor in the number of car accidents in Texas. Car accidents and trucks can occur because of:
- Improper design;
- The surface condition of a road;
- Inadequate guardrails;
- Lack of adequate marking or signage;
- Vegetation blocking sightlines; or
- Poor traffic control in work zones.
If you are able to hold the other party accountable, some of the things that you may be able to revert include:
- Medical bills
- Loss of income and benefits
- Physical pain and suffering
- Loss of quality of life.
Essential to be safe on the road this upcoming holiday season
There is a 1 out of 114 chance of drivers dying in a traffic accident anytime. Unfortunately, the number of chances increases when holiday travelers crowd the road. Here are a couple of safety tips to remember this upcoming holiday season when you and your family hit the road:
Before a road trip, it is essential to verify that your vehicle is in good shape, especially during winter driving conditions. Make sure to pack a windshield scraper and check the weather conditions before heading out.
Pay attention to your speed
Speeding is the leading cause of car accidents in Texas. Although it may seem common for people to speed, many drivers don’t comprehend completely that moving at a higher rate of speed reduces the amount of time they have to react to avoid problems that may arise on the road.
Take breaks to stay fresh and alert
According to a study done by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), annually on average from 2009 to 2013, there were over 72,000 police-reported crashes involving drowsy driving, with an estimate of 41,000 people and killing more than 800. Make sure to plan out your trip to ensure that you take regular breaks to avoid drowsy driving.
Don’t drive impaired
We will say it again. If you plan on drinking, don’t drive. Using a designated driver when deciding to have a few drinks is always the safest choice.
Come around the holiday time. Traffic and weather road conditions can be frustrating. Place safety for yourself and anyone in your vehicle by allowing impatient and aggressive drivers to pass or go through the intersection ahead of you to allow yourself to have better control.
In 2019, distracted driving claimed 3,142 lives. Texting remains the most alarming distraction. One cannot drive safely unless the driving is their main attention. Any non-driving activity that you engage in is a potential distraction and increases your chance of crashing.
Here at The Carlson Law Firm, we care and we can help.
Being involved in a car accident, especially due to someone else’s negligence can be very stressful. It can be overwhelming having to deal with the insurance companies and recuperate from any injuries you may have sustained. Fortunately, you don’t have to be alone. Call us today to speak to one of our legal experts and discuss your legal options regarding your case. We offer free consultations. We care and we can help.