The last two years have brought much change for everyone. Many areas spent a significant amount of time in various stages of lockdown.
There was a dramatic shift in the traffic patterns in Texas and other parts of the country during lockdowns. While there were fewer vehicles on the roads, many areas saw an increase in accidents.
These are some of the causes for the increase and what the new traffic patterns meant for Texans.
Looking for the cause
The crash statistics are in, but the analysis is an ongoing process. As researchers look for causes for the increase in traffic fatalities, some of the current ideas for reasons include:
- Distracted driving
- Impaired driving
- Lack of seatbelt use
- Increased nighttime driving
Organizations like the National Safety Council and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration are looking at the causes of the increase in fatalities and how to reduce these numbers.
Where Texas fits in
While it would be an exaggeration to say that the entire country experienced more traffic deaths, the overall increase was significant, and only nine states saw a reduction in fatalities. On the other hand, Texas saw a rise in deaths of over 18 percent in 2020 from 2019.
While the jump in statistics is unusual, the causes of the accidents were not. Often, the collisions were caused by speeding or distracted driving. When there are fewer drivers on the road and dramatically more fatalities, it raises some concerns. Various traffic safety organizations are looking at these changes as a signal that there need to be adjustments in the current approach to traffic safety.