What are the Leading Causes of Car Accidents in Texas?

PUBLISHED ON: May 29, 2024

Texas leads the nation in the total number of traffic fatalities. In 2021, the state reported 4,480 traffic deaths, or one fatality every two hours. This places Texas in the top 10 for fatalities per 100 million vehicle miles driven. With such high numbers, understanding the leading causes of vehicle crashes in Texas is crucial for anyone who spends time on the road. Here’s a look at the primary reasons behind these accidents, backed by statistics from the Texas Department of Transportation.

Heavy car accident in Texas road

1.     Speeding

Driving at unsafe speeds tops the list of factors contributing to Texas car accidents. In 2020 alone, there were 140,958 crashes attributed to speeding—whether driving too fast or too slow for the current road conditions. These accidents resulted in 1,272 fatalities and caused serious injuries to 49,890 people. Speed limits are set for a reason, and exceeding them increases the likelihood of a collision.

2.     Reckless and Distracted Driving

Reckless and distracted driving is another primary cause of car crashes in Texas. This category encompasses various dangerous behaviors, including failing to yield, tailgating, making evasive maneuvers, ignoring traffic signals, and using a cell phone while driving. Distracted driving has become increasingly prevalent with the rise of smartphones. Other causes of distraction in the vehicle include adjusting the music, eating or drinking, and dealing with rowdy passengers, demonstrating the need for drivers to remain focused on the road at all times.

3.     Changing or Maintaining Lanes

Failure to stay in the lane and attempting unsafe lane changes accounted for 77,202 car accidents in Texas in 2020. These incidents occur when drivers switch lanes without checking for other vehicles, swerve unexpectedly, or misuse passing lanes. Using your signal and remaining aware of your surroundings are vital practices to prevent these types of collisions.

4.     Driving Under the Influence

Drunk driving remains a major problem in Texas. Intoxicated drivers have impaired judgment and slower reaction times, making them a hazard on the road. In 2020, DUI-related crashes totaled 26,418, with 1,162 resulting in fatalities. While not as common of a factor as speeding, DUI is particularly deadly, with one in 25 crashes resulting in a fatality.

5.     Aggressive Driving

Aggressive drivers, who exhibit behaviors such as road rage, cutting off other vehicles, and blocking others from passing, led to 20,376 crashes in 2020. This type of driving is indicative of deeper issues related to stress and impatience among drivers. If you encounter an aggressive driver, hang back and let them pass. It’s not worth engaging them if you could end up in an accident—or worse.

Speak with a Car Accident Lawyer in Texas

Car accidents can have a devastating impact on victims and their families. If you or someone you love has been involved in a crash, contact Nava Law Group for help holding the negligent party responsible. With over 150 years of combined legal experience, our highly qualified attorneys can assist you in recovering the compensation you deserve. Contact us at 713.661.9900 to schedule a free consultation with a car accident lawyer in Houston, Bellaire, Edinburg, or Austin, TX.

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