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Cars and trucks generally have more safety features now than ever before, but the dangers on Texas roadways are still undeniable.

Statewide in 2016, there were roughly 3,400 fatal accidents and 175,000 accidents resulting in injury, according to a recent report from the Insurance Council of Texas.

The report shows that fatal crashes have risen more than 20 percent over the last six years.

Seatbelts, anti-lock brakes, rearview cameras, ignition interlock devices — these are all safety features or mechanisms designed to reduce the number of deaths and injuries on Texas roads. So why are fatalities increasing?

Statistics show that the two major factors are distracted driving and drunk driving. In fact, Texas has one of highest drunk driving rates in the country.

For more on the ongoing problem of distracted driving, please see our previous post, “Apple Needs to Implement ‘Driver Mode’ in Smartphones, Says Lawsuit.”

While driver distraction and driver intoxication cause far too many crashes, multiple other factors have led to the increase in injuries and deaths.

A quickly growing population, higher than average speed limits, an improved economy, and relatively low gas prices have all led to more drivers being on the road in Texas, and that in turn has increased the potential for wrecks.

To do their part, all drivers need to commit to driving responsibly. That means avoiding drunk driving and all forms of distracted driving, including texting while driving.

At Johnson Hobbs Squires LLP, we advise and represent accident victims and their families. To learn more, please see our personal injury overview.