Speed remains top contributing factor in Texas crashes

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AUSTIN – Drivers continue to choose to go too fast on Texas roads, making speed the number one contributing factor in traffic crashes. That’s why TxDOT is partnering with law enforcement on the “Be Safe. Drive Smart.” campaign to urge motorists to slow down.

Last year, a third of the people killed on the road were in a crash that involved speed. This translates to 1,469 lives that were lost on Texas roads in speed-related crashes.

“Getting to your destination two or three minutes faster just isn’t worth the risk of a crash and causing harm to yourself or others,” said TxDOT Executive Director Marc Williams. “Motorists who observe the speed limit and match their driving to road and weather conditions can help prevent crashes.”

TxDOT’s speeding awareness campaign coincides with Operation Slowdown, a statewide, high-visibility speed enforcement period. From July 14 through July 30, Texas law enforcement agencies are stepping up efforts to get drivers to slow down or pay up.

Smart, safe driving means more than following the speed limit. TxDOT has these safety tips for motorists:

  • Match your speed to road conditions if there’s bad weather or you’re driving through a work zone.
  • Slow down and allow for more distance to stop when traffic is heavy or roads are slick.
  • Watch for road signs alerting you of reduced speed limits ahead.

This month TxDOT is delivering the campaign’s safe speed messages on TV, radio, billboards, gas pumps, theater screens and social media. Community events featuring an interactive exhibit of safety quizzes and video displays will be held at Buc-ee’s locations along major travel corridors. TxDOT’s HERO trucks, which assist motorists in need and clear minor crashes, will also display campaign signage to encourage drivers to slow down.

“Be Safe. Drive Smart.” is a key component of #EndTheStreakTX, a broader social media and word-of-mouth effort that encourages drivers to make safer choices while behind the wheel to help end the streak of daily deaths. Nov. 7, 2000, was the last deathless day on Texas roadways.