Whether you are traveling, driving to work, visiting a friend, or simply picking up fast food, some cities in Texas offer drivers a better experience than others. For most, the road itself has a major impact on a driver’s satisfaction, however, there are a number of other variables that need to be accounted for as well. The list of the 100 best and worst cities to be a driver provided by WalletHub takes a look at the average gas prices, average annual traffic delays, and rates of car theft.
Some cities in Texas are known to have higher traffic congestion, poorly maintained roads, or other driving challenges, which may make them relatively more difficult or less pleasant for driving compared to other areas. It’s important to note that driving experiences and perceptions of “worst” cities to drive in can vary depending on individual preferences, road conditions, time of day, weather, and other factors.
Here are a few cities in Texas that are sometimes noted for their traffic congestion or other driving challenges:
- Houston: As one of the largest cities in the United States, Houston is known for its significant traffic congestion during peak hours. The city has a large population, extensive road networks, and ongoing construction projects, which can contribute to traffic delays and challenges for drivers.
- Dallas: Another major city in Texas, Dallas is also known for its traffic congestion during peak hours. The city has a dense population, extensive highways, and ongoing construction projects, which can lead to traffic challenges and delays for drivers.
- Austin: While known for its vibrant culture and music scene, Austin has also experienced significant population growth in recent years, resulting in increased traffic congestion in some areas. The city has been working on transportation initiatives to address traffic challenges, but it may still present difficulties for drivers during peak hours.
- San Antonio: While generally considered less congested compared to cities like Houston, Dallas, or Austin, San Antonio can still have traffic congestion in some areas, particularly during peak hours or in heavily traveled tourist areas.
Texas Fatal Auto Accident Stats For 2019
Texas, which is one of the most populous states in the United States, has appeared to rank poorly when it comes to road safety. Due to the busy lives of most Texans, the city has a high number of vehicle owners which has translated to an increase in auto accidents over the years.
Narrowing the statistics to only fatal crashes (crashes involving death), Texas still doesn’t do so well. It is no news that the 7th of November, 2000 was the last time Texas had a whole day devoid of fatalities. Every day after that day has not been the same.
The national average for road fatalities as at 2018 was 11.9 but in a twist of events, Texas alone lost a little less than 0.02% (or 12.7 per 100,000) of it’s population to auto crashes. This puts Texas as the state with the second-highest auto crash fatalities in the U.S.
19 years after having a crash-free day, Texas has gone on to record an average of 10 fatalities every day. From 2010 to 2017, the numbers kept rising despite all efforts made leading to a total loss of over 20,000 lives. However, in a twist of events, the figures went down by 4% in 2018 but not without claiming over 3,000 lives. This figure was still higher than that recorded 7 years ago.
What are the Major Causes of Auto Crash Fatalities in Texas?
Generally, driving under influence has been a high-risk factor for road fatalities. Despite the warnings and penalties enforced, some residents still flour the rules, hoping to somehow get to their destination safely. In most cases, it never ends safely.
Although driving under influence ranks as the number 1 cause of fatal crashes in many cities, over-speeding tops the charts for Texas. Residents of the state seem to have a penchant for ignoring speed limits in a quick dash to get to their destinations.
Another major risk factor is texting while driving – a law was passed against the act in 2017. This plus other forms of distractions such as receiving calls and engaging in intense conversations have had a significant impact on the number of fatalities.
It has also been reported that most of the vehicles involved in auto crashes within Texas are SUVs and other heavy-duty vehicles.
The figures have repeatedly declined with many agencies and corporate bodies leading campaigns to create awareness on road and traffic safety. Experts predict a crash-free state by 2050 and with the compliance of residents and visitors, this goal may be achieved soon.
Motor Vehicle Accident Fatalities on the Rise in Texas
Where other states are seeing a long-term drop in these types of fatal accidents, Texas has seen an eight percent increase between 2009 and 2013. This increase appears to coincide with the state’s fracking and oil drilling boom. With more commercial trucks on the road, traveling to and from drilling sites, many believe the 51 percent increase in accidents involving commercial vehicles is no coincidence.
Can the increase in motor vehicle accident fatalities be traced back to Texas’ fracking and oil drilling boom?
No definitive evidence exists showing the state’s fracking and oil drilling boom is the reason behind the rise in motor vehicle accident fatalities. Having said that, records do show a significant increase in these types of accidents in areas surrounding the Permian Basin, the Barnett Shale, and the Eagle Ford shale. Traffic accident fatalities in these areas can be broken down as follows:
The Dangers of Having More Commercial Trucks on the Road
Although it might not be possible to clearly determine the causes behind the rise in motor vehicle accident fatalities in Texas, a Department of Public Safety (DPS) program may shed a little light on a serious problem. The DPS program, named “Road Check,” has uncovered an issue relating to commercial trucking companies and the increase of commercial trucks traveling to and from fracking and oil drilling sites. Information gathered as part of this program has shown that approximately 30 percent of all commercial trucks on Texas roadways should not be in operation due to dangerous safety issues, such as:
|Inoperable safety lights|
|Unsafe or unfit drivers|
In fact, earlier this year a young woman tragically lost her life when her vehicle was T-boned by an oilfield hauling truck after the driver ran a red light. Further investigation into the accident revealed the driver did not have a motor carrier license, nor insurance. The truck itself was found to have numerous defects including faulty brakes and malfunctioning lights. The trucking company who employed the driver was also unlicensed and had failed a DPS safety audit a few months earlier.
It’s important to note that driving experiences can vary depending on the time of day, weather, road conditions, and other factors. It’s always best to exercise caution, follow traffic laws and regulations, and be prepared for potential driving challenges when driving in any city or location. Planning your routes in advance, allowing for extra travel time during peak hours, and staying updated on local traffic conditions can also help make your driving experience smoother and safer.
Contact Herrman & Herrman If You’ve Been Injured In A Car Accident in Texas
With over 100 years of combined experience among the legal team of Herrman & Herrman, P.L.L.C., our Texas personal injury attorneys have successfully resolved over 20,000 cases. When representing injured Texas residents, we fight for justice against wrongdoing and aggressively pursue the best resolution to complex personal injury claims.
If you or a loved one was injured, please contact us for a free initial consultation and case evaluation. Herrman & Herrman, P.L.L.C., is a locally based law firm focused on holding negligent individuals and companies accountable for their wrongdoing. We are not a personal injury mill that advertises nationwide. We provide individualized advocacy in attending to all aspects of claims that involve. Our firm has offices in the following locations: Corpus Christi, Corpus Christi South Side, Brownsville, McAllen, San Antonio, Houston, and Ft. Worth, TX.
We remain by our clients’ side, handling all aspects of their claims and attending to all legal, medical and financial needs. That dedication is combined with experience, legal knowledge, and insight from a former insurance adjuster and several former insurance defense attorneys. Whether our clients are suffering from physical pain from an accident or the emotional grief of death, we treat clients with compassion. We put their mind at ease during difficult times by answering their questions concerning the length of their claim, medical bills, financial compensation and their overall need for a lawyer.