North Texas Crash Rates, Fatalities Spike

Vehicle Accident
Vehicle Accident | Image by PongMoji/Shuttestock

A recent report showed that automobile crash rates and fatalities spiked in some North Texas counties last year.

The North Central Texas Council of Governments (NCTCG) recently published its annual safety performance report for 2022, showing some mixed results across the dozen counties in the region.

For instance, while Dallas and Tarrant counties saw fewer crashes between 2021 and 2022, Collin and Denton counties logged increases.

At the same time, Dallas and Collin counties saw increases in traffic fatalities, whereas Tarrant and Denton counties reported decreases.

More specifically, Collin County reported an 11.63% bump year over year in accidents and an alarming 50.98% spike in fatalities. On the flip side, Tarrant County noted a decrease in both metrics.

Some differences were also reported between urban and rural areas, with the latter accounting for 19.21% of the region’s traffic fatalities, with 166 deaths logged out of the total of 864.

Overall, the report uncovered some alarming statistics for the 12 counties, including that a crash happened every 4 minutes and 11 seconds, a person was injured every 16 minutes and 26 seconds, and a person was killed every 10 hours and 9 minutes.

The NCTCG’s report dug into some of the most common causes of collisions resulting in serious injuries and fatalities in North Texas.

Speeding emerged as the leading cause by far, accounting for 30.56%, followed by driver-related causes, which included distracted driving and road rage, at 16.24%.

Impaired driving appeared third in the top causes of serious collisions. The majority of these alcohol-related incidences occurred between 10 p.m. and 3:59 a.m., and just under 50% happened on weekends.

They also accounted for 29% of the total number of traffic fatalities in 2022.

Leading up to Labor Day weekend, The Dallas Express covered a study finding that Dallas ranked second among the top three deadliest cities for Labor Day travel behind Los Angeles.

Moreover, as previously reported in The Dallas Express, Dallas tied for first place with Atlanta for being the city where motorists are most likely to be involved in a collision, according to Forbes.

The city logged a fatality rate of 16.5 per every 100,000 people, placing it the seventh-highest on the list.

The NCTCG has outlined a Roadway Safety Plan to counteract some of these worrying statistics seen across the region.

It identifies high-risk roads and suggests various areas of focus — including speeding and distracted driving — to reduce serious injuries and deaths on North Texas roadways. These primarily entail increasing law enforcement capabilities and public education initiatives.

The Texas Department of Transportation has similarly launched an awareness-building campaign known as #EndTheStreakTX to promote safer driving practices in the Lone Star State overall.

On the policy side, Texas lawmakers recently passed several bills during the 88th legislative session aimed at boosting traffic safety, as covered in The Dallas Express.

They primarily constitute minor changes and tweaks, such as replacing the term “accident” with “collision” in the Texas Transportation Code and allowing local authorities to alter speed limits based on road conditions.

Yet the moves were applauded by traffic safety advocates, such as Jay Blazek Crossley, the executive director of an Austin-based nonprofit called Farm & City.

He told the Houston Chronicle that “the Legislature is ready to do something.”

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