Traffic Deaths Decline in Texas, U.S. in 2022

Vehicle collision
Vehicle collision | Image by Shutterstock

Although the number of motor vehicle deaths has decreased in recent years in Texas and across the United States, some say more can be done to further reduce the number of fatalities.

The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) released statistics on 2022 motor vehicle accidents. The data shows a 1.99% decrease in fatalities for every 100 million miles driven compared to 2021.

There was also a 0.36% decrease in the total number of deaths reported in 2022, with 4,481 deaths logged compared to the 4,497 recorded in 2021. While the decrease in total deaths may not appear significant, Texans were actually driving more in 2022.

The total number of miles traveled in Texas in 2022 was 289.965 billion, a 1.66% increase from the 285.224 billion miles traveled in 2021.

In addition to the dipping number of fatalities in Texas, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported a 0.3% decrease in the number of fatalities nationwide.

An estimated 42,795 people died in motor vehicle traffic accidents in 2022, compared to 42,939 deaths in 2021, per the NHTSA.

Although the number of crashes and driving accident deaths decreased in both Texas and the United States on the whole between 2021 and 2022, the numbers are still running considerably higher compared to what they were a decade earlier.

The NHTSA reported in 2012 that there were 33,561 people killed in motor vehicle accidents.

Abby Drexler, the public relations manager for Market Watch Guide, told The Dallas Express that the high number of fatalities in 2022 was “sobering” to learn about.

Drexler referenced steps that individual states are taking to help reduce the number of fatalities while driving, including “no hands laws.” Such laws, which vary from state to state, are meant to mitigate traffic deaths by prohibiting handheld devices while driving.

“On a state level, what can happen is making sure those laws are enforced,” said Drexler, speaking with The Dallas Express.

Some cities across the country have also started taking more comprehensive steps to reduce traffic fatalities, such as the Dallas City Council, which adopted a plan called “Vision Zero” in 2019.

The goal of the initiative, as stated on the Dallas City Hall website, is to “[e]liminate all traffic-related deaths and reach a 50% reduction in severe injuries from crashes by 2030.”

Despite the plan being passed by council members four years ago, a progress report found that just nine of the 40 action items listed in the plan have been implemented, as previously reported by The Dallas Express.

Dallas has garnered a reputation as one of the most dangerous cities to drive in, at least according to a Forbes ranking, which had Atlanta and Dallas tied for first place on its official list of “Top 50 Cities Where You’re Most Likely to Get in a Car Accident.”

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