There is a lot of ground to cover on Texas roads. Naturally, there are going to be a lot of accidents in such a big state. Let’s look at some of the stats about Texas crashes from 2018 and some of the biggest causes of Texas accidents.
In 2018, there was a reportable crash on Texas roads every 58 seconds. There were no days in 2018 without a death resulting from a car accident. This is why it is important to learn about preventing accidents as well as what to do after an accident when you do have one.
Crashes – where are the most in Texas?
Harris County (the Houston area) had 107,215 crashes in 2018 – the most of any county in the state. This is in line with the number of people living in the county. With so many cars on the roads in this area, accidents will happen frequently.
Following, in this same fashion, is Dallas County with 49,837 crashes, and Bexar County (San Antonio area) with 49,191.
Travis County (Austin area) has the sixth-largest amount of crashes in Texas, behind Fort Worth and El Paso counties.
It’s important to note that a lot more small crashes happen in urban areas because of the volume of traffic, not necessarily due to driving skills or dangerous roads.
Deadliest accident types
The deadliest crash type in 2018 was single-vehicle run-off-the-road crashes in Texas. This type of crash caused 1,289 deaths and made up 35% of all Texas motor vehicle deaths that year.
Accounting for 701 road deaths were intersection-related crashes, followed by 548 deaths via head-on collisions.
The majority of crashes that result in death happen in rural areas, likely affected by the high number of high-speed roads and fewer barriers between oncoming vehicles.
What causes Texas collisions?
There are a lot of different factors that can influence a crash. Here are some numbers about the main causes of accidents in Texas.
The biggest factor of both rural and urban crashes was speeding. It accounted for 33,157 rural accidents and 105,112 urban accidents. Most of these accidents were preventable by simply slowing down.
Speeding reduces the time you have to react to changing circumstances on the road. Not only that, but the faster you drive, the most severe your crash is likely to be.
2. Distracted driving
This is a broad category, which can include anything that takes the driver’s mind or eyes off the road. It can include cell phone usage, eating, disruptive passengers, or simply zoning out.
Urban areas had significantly more of these crashes, with 66,915 in 2018. In rural areas, this only amounted to 17, 920 crashes. This is still a big number, but the comparison emphasizes the danger of inattention in an urban setting, where there are more cars on the road and more signals to yield to.
3. Failing to yield
This includes failing to yield properly at a left turn, a right turn on red, at a stop sign, and a private drive. In urban settings, where these types of intersections of traffic happen most, there were over 70,000 crashes in 2018. For rural settings, the number was over 23,000.
Urban traffic also had significantly more accidents from drivers disregarding a stop sign or signal.
4. Changing lanes when unsafe
Again, urban settings had bigger numbers when it came to accidents caused by changing lanes. There were 31,225 crashes in Texas due to this in 2018. In rural areas, the number was 6,541.
Something to keep in mind when you’re changing lanes: Always put on your signal before you intend to move. If there is a vehicle next to you that you might not see, they may be aware of your presence when you do this and move out of the way accordingly.
Blind-spot-checking technology is increasingly better at detecting cars in adjacent lanes, and, hopefully, will these crashes in the years to come.
5. Failure to maintain lane
This factor is often due to distracted or drunk driving and can be extremely dangerous for drivers around the vehicle. In urban areas, there were 23,924 crashes due to this, and there were 11,795 of these crashes in rural areas.
6. Animal on the road
This is a big factor that stood out to us since it had more rural than urban accidents. This includes animals that are both wild and domestic. Rural areas had more than 10,000 crashes involving animals and urban crashes only amounted to about 2,000.
This makes sense in that there is more wildlife outside the city, and therefore more wildlife crossing the road. Always look on the sides of the roads, especially when going through the Hill Country where animals and easily dart out of trees and brush unexpectedly.
Regardless of road conditions, it’s always important to pay attention to your driving. Many accidents are preventable by simply shutting down distractions and focusing on the road ahead.
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