Thousands of people are involved in car accidents every year, and most people will experience some type of motor vehicle accident at some point in their lives. Many accidents occur because of factors such as sun glare, mechanical failure, or dangerous road conditions caused by bad weather. However, many more accidents are caused by drivers who are under the influence, distracted, fatigued, negligent, or just reckless. Read on to learn the numbers behind Texas car accident statistics.
Even though accidents happen often, serious accidents can change people’s lives forever. Victims may be left with enormous physical, financial, and emotional burdens that last long after the moment of impact.
The Texas Department of Transportation provides detailed statistics about car accidents in the state. It is important to recognize that each of these numbers represents actual individuals, who may suffer from their resulting damages for months or even years to come.
Overview of San Antonio Car Accident Statistics
Overall, most San Antonio car accidents result in property damage with no injuries. About 24,000 of the 38,000 crashes San Antonio experiences every year don’t cause any known injuries. Of the 95,000 people involved in car accidents in San Antonio each year, about one third are injured or killed.
What Causes San Antonio Car Accidents?
There are several common factors that tend to lead to car accidents in San Antonio. Speeding is the number-one contributing factor, causing more than 99,000 crashes across the state in 2021 alone. Distracted driving is the next big cause of accidents, causing almost 63,000 crashes statewide per year.
Unsafe lane changes cause about 34,000 accidents statewide every year, and driving in multiple lanes causes another 30,000 crashes. Failing to yield causes more than 45,000 crashes every year, and ignoring traffic signals leads to about 20,000 accidents. Following too closely and drunk driving also contribute to thousands of additional wrecks every year in Texas.
How Many Accidents Occur in Texas?
Texas is first in the nation for number of traffic accident fatalities. There is a crash on Texas roads about once every 71 seconds. Someone dies in a Texas car accident approximately every 2.5 hours, and someone suffers a serious injury about every two minutes. According to the Texas Department of Transportation, in 2019 there were 19,506 serious injury crashes, with 30,992 serious injury victims. There were also 3,722 motor vehicle fatalities.
Why Do Car Accidents Happen?
A car accident can happen to anyone, anywhere, and at any time. However, traffic volume does impact accident rates.
Drivers in Texas traveled an incredible 286.3 billion miles during 2019, up 1.5 percent over miles traveled in 2018. As the number of vehicles on the road increases, so does the number of accidents.
Common Causes of Car Accidents
Common causes of car accidents include drivers driving under the influence, speeding, and distracted driving. Driving under the influence of alcohol accounts for about one-third of car accident fatalities. Drivers who are speeding have less control over their cars and less time to respond to hazards. Distracted driving (which includes inattention and cell phone use), was a contributing factor in 19 percent of the accidents.
The Texas Department of Transportation reports the leading causes of statewide traffic accidents in one recent year included:
- Failed to control speed: 33,593
- Driver inattention: 18,477
- Failed to drive in lane: 12,716
- Changed lane when unsafe: 34,343
- Failure to yield while turning left: 5,693
- Failure to yield at a stop sign: 6,530
- Unsafe speed: 13,534
- Following too closely: 21,340
- Disregarded stop and go signal: 2,421
- Failure to yield at a private drive: 3,729
- Driving under the influence of alcohol: 14,806
- Distraction in vehicle: 12,903
- Driving after drinking: 8,770
- Faulty evasive action: 21,055
- Driving under the influence of drugs: 3,148
When and Where Do Car Accidents Happen?
There is no guaranteed way to avoid car crashes. However, more accidents happen at certain times, and in certain places.
In 2019, Saturday was the most dangerous day to be on Texas roads, with 45 people killed in motor vehicle accidents. December was the most dangerous month, with 308 fatal accidents. In general, more alcohol-related accidents happen on Sundays than any other day of the week.
Statistics also show that 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. is the most dangerous hour to be on the road. During 2019, more alcohol-related accidents were reported during this hour than any other time of the day or night.
During the work week, rush hour can also be dangerous. Depending on where you live, the hours of 6 a.m. to 10 a.m., and 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., are often busiest with commuting drivers.
More teen drivers generally take to the road in the summer months, and inexperienced drivers cause more accidents.
During holidays, the roads are crowded with more travelers, shoppers, and partygoers. Holiday drivers are also more likely to drive drowsy or under the influence of alcohol.
Many people mistakenly believe that a long road trip is riskier than a short errand near home, but accidents most frequently occur within 25 miles of home. Why? One factor may be people driving a familiar route are on “auto-pilot” and become careless.
People also might assume that driving in urban areas is more dangerous than driving in rural areas. Yet, according to the American Community Survey from the U.S. Census Bureau, only 19 percent of the U.S. population lives in rural areas but 75 percent of all traffic fatalities in 2019 occurred in rural areas. Accidents in rural areas also caused almost 60 percent of accident fatalities in Texas.
Who Gets in Car Accidents in Texas?
Drivers of all ages get into car accidents. However, teen drivers have a particularly high accident rate. In 2016, more than 2,400 teens between the ages of 16 and 19 died in traffic crashes, and almost 293,000 were treated in emergency rooms.
Older drivers are also at risk for accidents, and as the population ages, more older drivers are keeping their licenses and continuing to drive for longer. While drivers who are age 70 and older have higher accident rates than middle-aged drivers, their accident rates are lower than that of teen drivers. However, older drivers have higher fatality rates because they are more likely to experience complications and die as a result of their injuries. To help address this issue, many states, including Texas, require people ages 85 and older to renew their licenses every two years, and to have their eyes tested at every renewal.
Common San Antonio Car Accident Injuries
There are a variety of common injuries that tend to result from San Antonio car accidents. Of course, concussions are extremely common after car wrecks. Even if your head doesn’t hit the dashboard or another hard surface, the forces involved in an accident can sling you around hard enough to send your brain crashing into the inside of your skull.
Broken bones are extraordinarily common in car accidents, as are soft tissue injuries like strains and sprains. Many car crash victims suffer cuts, bruises, or burns, especially if the vehicle catches fire. And particularly severe crashes may lead to spinal cord injuries or puncture wounds.
What Are the Consequences of Car Accidents?
Drivers being alert and careful on the road can help reduce the number of car accidents. However, there was not a single day in 2019 without a fatal car accident in Texas.
If you have been involved in an accident, speak to a personal injury lawyer with experience in motor vehicle accidents as soon as possible. The legal team at George Salinas Injury Lawyers can evaluate your case and determine your potential claims. Contact George Salinas Injury Lawyers at (210) 225-0909 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation and learn if we may be able to help you.
How Our San Antonio Car Accident Lawyers Can Help After a Car Accident
If you’ve been hurt in a car accident in San Antonio, you could be entitled to compensation. A fair settlement offer can help you pay for medical bills, cover lost wages, and get back on your feet financially. Unfortunately, you may face several hurdles as you try to get the money you deserve.
Often, insurance companies will send lowball settlement offers in the hopes that you’ll accept them without ever realizing you deserve more money. A San Antonio personal injury lawyer can help you evaluate this offer and decide on the best course of action in your case. They can also help you calculate how much money you’re really entitled to.
When you hire George Salinas Injury Lawyers, we can
- Investigate your claim to make sure it will be viable in court.
- Gather evidence to support your claim
- Interview witnesses who can verify your claim
- Send demand letters to the insurance company asking for a fair settlement offer
- Negotiate out of court to get you the money you deserve
- Take your case to trial if that’s what it takes to get you full compensation
Schedule a free consultation with us today to discuss the details of your case.