2021, The Deadliest Year for Traffic Fatalities in TX in 41 Years
Traffic fatalities in Texas continue to rise. 2021 was the second deadliest year on Texas roadways since they started tracking traffic fatalities in 1940.
Dangerous Texas Roadways
Driving through Texas can be dangerous. No matter how safe you think you are, something can go wrong in an instant and the results could be deadly.
According to the Texas Department of Transportation, 2021 was the second deadliest year on record with more than 4,480 deaths reported on Texas roadways - a 15% increase from 2020. That's pretty close to the record year of 1981, when there were 4,701 fatalities reported by TxDOT.
By way of comparison, TxDOT reported 3,896 fatalities in 2020.
Nationwide Road Fatalities
According to a report from The Dallas Morning News, the increase in Texas road fatalities are on track with nationwide results. TxDOT says that over 20,100 were killed in traffic fatalities in the U.S. during the first six months of 2021 - an increase of over 18% from the same time frame in 2020.
Slow Down - Buckle Up
Texas Transportation Commissioner Laura Ryan says that every Texan must do their part when it comes to roadway safety,
“Driver behavior is one of the causes, but also one of the most important solutions. This is not blame. These are facts. We all have a role. TxDOT can do more, and we accept that responsibility. The driving public can do more. For instance, in 2021, a total of 1,522 people were killed because of speed, and a total of 1,219 people were killed because they were not wearing a seat belt. These were decisions made by people that could have potentially saved 2,741 lives.”
It's worth repeating: 2,741 lives lost that could have been saved just by slowing down and wearing a seat belt.
A Work in Progress
Traffic safety campaigns are just one way to raise traffic safety awareness, but TxDOT is also working with researchers to design safer areas of roads that are more accident prone. However, it ultimately it comes down to individual driver safety and awareness.
You've seen the #endthestreak campaign on social media and on the digital highway signs. The idea is to bring awareness to road safety in Texas and end the streak of road fatalities.
How long has it been since Texas had a day without a road fatality? Almost 22 years. November 7, 2000 is the last time no deaths were recorded on Texas roads. It's time to end the streak.