Texas is not a stranger to irresponsible drivers.
Did you know the state ranked third in the nationwide worst drivers list in a study conducted for the year 2020?
If you think that’s bad, here’s the clincher.
That’s old news. Texas ranked even higher in 2022, a recent study revealed.
It’s now in the number one spot!
In this article, we’ll look at why there are many car accidents in Texas, which led to it being at the top of the list.
Texas Is in the Top 3 in the U.S. Worst Drivers List of 2020
So you think your state had the worst drivers in 2020? Unless you’re from Alaska or New Mexico, you’re mistaken.
According to a report by the Car Insurance Comparison, Alaska has the worst drivers in the U.S. In second place is New Mexico.
But in third place was Texas, which tied with Montana.
What made Alaska the worst?
The state accounted for many traffic-related deaths caused by drunk driving and speeding.
Drunk driving and speeding were also Texas’s leading causes of traffic deaths.
How did Car Insurance Comparison come up with this 2020 list?
The reporting organization said it obtained its statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Insurance Information Institute. It collected data on the rates of fatalities, incidents of failure to obey traffic rules, reckless driving, speeding, and drunk driving in these states.
Here’s how Texas fared in those five categories in 2020.
For its death rate, Texas landed in 17th place. Close to 46 percent of traffic-related deaths in the state were due to drunk driving. It’s the same reason why the state was third in drunk driving.
On the other hand, speeding contributed to around 27 percent of the fatalities. This placed the state in 12th place.
For failure to obey traffic rules, Texas was in eighth place. It ranked 12th in careless driving.
Texas Tops the 2022 List of the Worst Drivers in the U.S.
The Lone Star State is famous for its mouthwatering barbecue and warm weather. Unfortunately, Texas is also known for having the worst drivers.
In 2022, the state rose to the top of the list of the worst drivers in the U.S.
The Lone Star State was also number one in 2016. On the other hand, the state’s best year was 2018, when it ranked ninth.
Did you know many people regarded Interstate 45 as the second deadliest highway for four straight years, from 2016 to 2019?
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration tallied 92 deaths occurring on the Houston-situated expressway during the said period.
For this list of the worst drivers, Car Insurance Comparison used the same five categories: death rates, disobeying traffic rules, reckless driving, drunk driving, and speeding.
The 2022 worst category for Texas was reckless driving. The state recorded 2.24 pedestrian deaths per capita and 0.23 cyclist fatalities per capita.
Of Texas’s reported car accident-related deaths, 30 percent were due to excessive speeding. This rate represented over 1,100 deaths.
Texas also recorded 2,500 deaths due to drunk driving.
Why Is Texas Still on Top in 2022 List of the Worst Drivers
Texas was back on the top as the state with the worst drivers and high rates of traffic-related fatalities.
The Lone Star State has consistently ranked in the top 10 dangerous states to drive in. It had a 20-year streak, with an average of 10 deaths per day. Sadly, this figure was quite alarming for safety advocates.
For 2022, Texas tied with New Mexico, having the worst rates for over-speeding, careless driving, drunk driving, and failure to obey traffic laws. These two states were notorious for their reckless driving.
Also tied for second place are Montana and South Carolina. They have the worst death rates.
And wrapping up the top five was Louisiana, with alarming fatalities and careless driving rates.
In addition to careless driving and over-speeding, Texas didn’t score well in the traffic rules department as its drivers often broke them.
The state also had high fatalities in car accidents involving drivers without a valid driving license. Alcohol-related accidents were also high—so high that Texas was at the top of the list, with almost 80 percent of car accident deaths involving alcohol.
Car Accident-Related Death Rates in 2022
The Lone Star State ranked eighth when it came to having the highest death rates in the top 10 states with the worst drivers. It averaged 1.26 deaths per 100 million vehicle miles traveled.
South Carolina had the worst in this department, with 1.73 deaths per 100 million vehicle miles traveled. New Mexico came in second place with a 1.53 death rate.
Failure to Obey Traffic Laws in 2022
This category has three subcategories: involves a traffic safety device (like a traffic sign, traffic signal, or a traffic officer present), not wearing a seat belt, and driving without a valid license.
Texas ranked fourth in the list of fatal crashes involving traffic safety devices. Nevada was the worst in this subcategory.
On the other hand, where no seat belts were involved, fatal crashes accounted for about 18 percent. Here, Montana was the worst.
Texas topped the list for fatal crashes with drivers that didn’t have valid licenses at 19 percent.
In this regard, Robert Johnson, the founder of Sawinery.net, has this to say:
“Safety rules and regulations should be regularly reiterated to drivers until compliance becomes a habit. Monitoring is also an important part of this endeavor as it’s a way to ensure everyone’s cooperation.”
Careless Driving in 2022
This category has two subcategories: pedestrian death rate and cyclist death rate.
In the pedestrian death subcategory, New Mexico was the worst, with a rate of 3.96 pedestrian fatalities per 100,000 people. On the other hand, South Carolina was the worst in the cyclist department, with a rate of 0.50 per 100,000 population.
Texas recorded a 2.24 pedestrian fatality rate per capita and a 0.23 cyclist death rate per capita.
Avoiding car accidents in Texas entails skills, knowledge, and attitude. One must also be familiar with traffic laws and safe practices.
Drunk Driving Statistics in 2022
This category has two subcategories:
- drunk driving fatalities where at least one driver had a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or above
- drunk driving deaths when at least one driver had a BAC of 0.07 or lower
In both instances, Texas recorded the worst rates.
It should be noted that drivers that operate a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol with a BAC of 0.08 or above will be issued a DUI violation. This violation also means a suspension of the erring driver’s license.
Having a DUI violation can have other undesirable consequences too. For one, car insurance premium rates will increase.
And if there is a driving license suspension, there may be several requirements to comply with before getting it back. The erring driver must undergo education courses and pay steep fines, among other expenses.
There is a simple reason why drunk driving is harshly penalized in Texas. This grave offense is extremely dangerous—potentially fatal, as many deaths have resulted from drunk driving.
Over-Speeding Rates in 2022
Of the 10 states with the worst drivers, Hawaii ranked first in terms of speeding violations in 2022.
Hawaii marked 48 percent of the total speed-related traffic deaths of all 10 states. At a close second place was South Carolina with 46 percent.
Texas recorded 30 percent, landing in sixth place.
Driving at excessive speeds should be discouraged. When one speeds up, it significantly shortens the reaction time, thus, increasing the likelihood of not avoiding collisions.
To this end, drivers need to observe the posted speed limits.
It’s ironic how Texas has the highest speed limits in the country. In some of its roadways, the speed limits reach 85 miles per hour. Yet it records one of the worst rates in over-speeding.
Responsible Driving Makes Safer Roads
Apart from those five categories used in determining the worst drivers, distracted driving is one of Texas’s leading causes of car accidents.
Distracted driving means losing focus on the road. So if the driver has his attention on something else, he will likely lose control of the vehicle or diminish his reaction time to avoid accidents.
For instance, using one’s mobile phone is a form of distracted driving. The driver is looking down at the screen or typing a text message. As a result, he takes his eyes off the road and becomes unmindful of what’s in front of him.
Pull over to the side of the road if you are tempted to look at your phone or send a text message. Otherwise, put your phone away as you continue driving.
Tailgating Increases the Risk of Car Accidents in Texas
One of the dangerous things that drivers do is tailgating. If the driver in front suddenly brakes, this leaves little to no time for the vehicle at the back to stop or swerve.
No wonder tailgating is one of the common causes of rear-end collisions.
You can avoid this type of collision by avoiding tailgating. Leave a safety margin between you and the car in front. So if the driver in front decides to step on the brakes, you still have enough time and space to avoid a collision.
Contacting a Car Accident Lawyer in Houston
Have you been seriously injured in a car accident with a reckless driver?
A competent car accident lawyer in Houston can help you.
The lawyers of O’Hara Law Firm can help you seek damages and secure justice. We have represented thousands of victims in personal injury, car accident, and wrongful death cases.
Schedule your free consultation today.