At some point in your driving career, you have probably had some close calls and maybe even been involved in an major traffic accident on Texas highways. If you have never been in an auto accident and you are trying to tempt fate, there is a section of a US Highway in Texas that is just waiting to expedite your personal experience of being in a car wreck.

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Why is the Texas highway called Death Highway?

There was a massive surge in traffic accidents in the middle of the last decade as the demand for oil from the Permian Basin grew significantly. In 2017, 93 people died on the Texas stretch of the highway alone according to this article in The Dallas Morning News.

What is causing all of the accidents on Death Highway?


A few of the major contributing factors are the lack of road quality for the sheer number of truckers that are using US Highway 285 to access the oil fields. The roadway was originally a rural highway that wasn't designed with the massive demand it now has for semis transporting oil, and the necessary supplies that are needed to harvest the oil.

Statistically the road was in line with national averages for accidents until the recent oil boom. Most of the road remains relatively benign until you reach the Texas portion that is especially used for supporting the drilling of oil.

Even with this info, I might still prefer driving a rural highway than dealing with the world's largest highway that is also in Texas.

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