Anderson Injury Lawyers | January 18, 2024 | Car Accidents
According to a recent report from NBC 5, Dallas has the worst traffic death rate among all of America’s major cities. Dallas’s traffic fatality rate between 2017 and 2021 was 15 deaths per 100,000 people, a rate higher than Phoenix, Houston, and even Los Angeles.
NBC’s investigation found that more than 1,000 people have died in Dallas traffic crashes since 2019. Another 5,600 were seriously hurt in collisions during this time period.
Top Contributing Factors To Dallas Car Wrecks
The Texas Department of Transportation’s statistics identified drivers who failed to drive in a single lane, alcohol-impaired drivers, and those who were speeding as the top three causes of fatal accidents in 2021. Combined, these three factors alone were responsible for over 2,000 accidents in the Lone Star State in which one or more people lost their lives.
Fatal accidents represent just a small fraction of the total number of vehicular collisions that take place. The Department’s statistics also identify the following as the top reasons for car collisions in urban areas like Dallas in 2021. The list includes:
Failing To Control Speed (99,507 Crashes)
Drivers who fail to control their speed differ from those who drive at an unsafe speed, as discussed below. Failing to control one’s speed means exceeding the speed limit, and this accounted for nearly 100,000 accidents in 2021.
Inattentiveness (62,739 Crashes)
Driver inattentiveness accounted for 62,739 total collisions in urban areas in 2021. Whether distracted by a cell phone, changing the radio dial, or some other distraction, the practice takes a driver’s focus away from the road and increases the likelihood of an accident.
Unsafe Changing of Lane (34,551 Crashes)
In a busy urban environment like Dallas, you must remain alert to other cars around you before changing lanes. Check your blind spots and signal well in advance before switching lanes to reduce the likelihood of an accident.
Failing To Drive in a Single Lane (30,270 Crashes)
Drivers who failed to stay in a single lane may have been distracted, impaired, or experiencing another event. Regardless, leaving your lane of travel unexpectedly and without signaling to other drivers can catch other motorists by surprise and lead to a crash.
Failing To Yield the Right-of-Way When Turning Left (27,083 Crashes)
Failing to yield the right of way under any circumstance contributed to over 50,000 accidents. The most common right-of-way violation was failing to wait until approaching traffic had cleared before turning left, which caused over 27,000 accidents.
Failing To Yield the Right-of-Way At a Stop Sign (21,573 Crashes)
The right-of-way laws at a stop sign can get confusing if multiple drivers coming from different directions must stop or when several motorists arrive at an intersection at the same time. This contributed to 21,573 accidents.
Disregarding Stop-And-Go Signals (19,199 Crashes)
A stop-and-go signal is a flashing red light, which motorists are to regard the same way as a stop sign. Whether motorists didn’t see this signal or didn’t know how to respond to it, it led to nearly 20,000 accidents in Texas urban areas in 2021.
Following Too Closely (17,505 Crashes)
Aggressive driving can lead you to follow the motorist ahead of you too closely. If you do not leave sufficient space between your car and the one in front of you, it is difficult for you to avoid a crash if that other car suddenly stops or slows down.
Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol (15,744 Crashes)
Drivers who were impaired by alcohol accounted for almost 16,000 collisions in cities and other urban areas in 2021. This not only includes drivers who were over the legal limit of 0.08. You can be too impaired to drive by even one drink, depending on your age, drinking habits, and other circumstances. If you feel “buzzed,” you are likely too impaired to drive safely.
Failing To Yield the Right-of-Way At a Private Drive (14,753 Crashes)
This factor includes exiting a business’s parking lot onto a public roadway. The law requires drivers to stop and yield to any other traffic before pulling out into the roadway. It can be especially dangerous to do this maneuver near intersections or where there is other traffic entering the same roadway from different directions.
Faulty Evasive Action (14,157 Crashes)
When drivers realize a crash is imminent, they may attempt to avoid the accident by swerving, slamming on their brakes, or taking other evasive action. These maneuvers can, in turn, cause collisions with other nearby traffic. Evasive actions that may have avoided one collision but caused another were behind 14,157 urban crashes in Texas.
Unsafe Speed (12,798 Crashes)
Even if you are traveling under the speed limit, you may still be driving too fast for the road or traffic conditions. The law requires you to adjust your speed according to your environment, which can mean slowing down in heavy traffic or during inclement weather. Drivers who did not were responsible for nearly 13,000 accidents in 2021.
Keeping Your Family Safe on Dallas Roads
Many of the contributing factors that lead to car accidents in Dallas and other urban population centers come down to drivers not exercising good judgment under the circumstances. Even if you operate your car responsibly, you should always remain alert and aware of other traffic. The driver in the next lane may not be paying attention, which can lead to a collision that involves you.
Slowing down and leaving plenty of space between cars could help prevent tens of thousands of accidents every year. It could also reduce the likelihood that you would be involved in such an accident. The extra few minutes it takes for you to reach your destination are well worth protecting yourself and your loved ones.
Contact Our Car Accident Law Firm in Texas
If you’ve been injured in an accident in Fort Worth or Dallas and need legal help, contact our car accident lawyers at Anderson Injury Lawyers to schedule a free consultation. We proudly serve Tarrant County, Dallas County, and throughout Texas.