Texas roads are hazardous places. That’s especially true for teenagers, who may lack the critical-thinking ability and experience necessary to avoid dangerous situations and make those on-the-fly judgments so essential for safe driving.
But, as reported by Houston Public Media, Texas State Representative James White — Republican representing District 19 — wants to make it easier for young people in the state to get a driver’s license.
He has filed a bill to revoke the current requirement, which states individuals under the age of 18 must pass a test administered by the Texas Department of Public Safety in order to receive a license.
White’s bill would allow a parent to administer the test to their child — as was the case before 2009. The lawmaker says he hopes his measure will reduce wait times at Department of Public Safety offices.…
As The Evans Law Firm and the National Safety Council observe Distracted Driving Awareness Month in April, help us by doing your part to keep Texas roads safe.
Distracted driving is nothing new. People have been eating, touching up makeup, and fiddling with the radio dial while behind the wheel since long before cell phones became part of the equation.
But as much as advancements in technology have improved our lives and ability to communicate, they haven’t done many favors for our driving. In addition to all of the old-school distractions, we now have dashboard touchscreens, GPS devices, and those ever-present smartphones to tempt our eyes away from the road.
Don’t endanger yourself, your family, and your fellow citizens. Join us in taking the National Safety Council’s pledge to Just Drive.
Distracted Driving Leads to Accident, Injury, and Death
Things are bad on Texas roads. In fact, we’re nearing the top of the list of states with the most pedestrian deaths. Our state’s increase in pedestrian fatalities is part of a bigger trend. In other words, the pedestrian safety problem is bad everywhere, but it’s particularly scary in Texas.
Just how bad is it? During the first six months of 2018, the number of pedestrian deaths in the Lone Star State increased by 32 percent from the year before, bringing the total number of pedestrian fatalities during the front end of 2018 to 298. Only Georgia saw an increase that big from 2017 to 2018.
This is a National Trend, Too
An increase in pedestrian deaths isn’t unique to Texas. Nationally, there’s been a 35 percent increase in pedestrian fatalities from 2008 to 2017. When including all types of …
How often are you doubling your risk for being involved in a car accident? Every time you look at your phone while driving, you’re putting yourself at a much greater risk of crashing. According to recent research from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, distraction is becoming an even more serious problem on our roads.
IIHS’s report has a few unsettling findings, but the biggest takeaway is that drivers were observed manipulating their cellphones 57 percent more in 2018 than they were in 2014. It seems that, despite the countless warnings by states and safety advocates, drivers just can’t seem to break their addiction to smartphones when behind the wheel.
How did IIHS determine the prevalence of smartphone usage among drivers? Simple. They put researchers next to roads and let them watch what people were doing. Their findings showed …
Vehicle accidents are the top killer of teens in the U.S., according to Consumer Reports. It’s been estimated that a 16- or 17-year-old driver is three time more likely to be killed while driving than those twenty and older, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. These are grim numbers for Texas’ teen drivers and their parents, but steps can be taken to improve the odds that your son or daughter will get to their destination safely.
You can start by making a good example when you drive or are a passenger. Kids pay attention to what we do, even if they don’t pay attention to what we say.
- Under state law, those in the front seat must use seatbelts, but those older than 17 need not use them if they’re behind the driver. Use your seatbelt all
After two years of increases in 2015 and 2016, the number of people killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes on U.S. roadways finally decreased in 2017. In 2017, 37,133 people were victims of fatal crashes, a 1.8-percent decrease from the 2016 figure of 37,806, according to a recent report by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Most of the victims were occupants of passenger vehicles, although many pedestrian deaths added to the total.
Vehicle Occupant Fatalities:
- Passenger cars: 13,363
- Light trucks: 10,188
- Motorcycles: 5,172
- Large trucks, buses, and other vehicles: 841
Vehicle Non-Occupant Fatalities:
- Pedestrians: 5,977
- Pedal cyclists: 783
- Other/unknown: 228
Texas saw 3,722 motor vehicle accident fatalities in 2017, down 2 percent from 3,797 in 2016, according to the NHTSA.
Alcohol-Related Accidents Declining
Unsurprisingly, alcohol-impaired driving accounted for a sizable chunk of 2017 fatalities: …
Bus crashes may not be as common on the roadways as crashes involving smaller vehicles, but they can be catastrophic for everyone involved. Because buses are so large and carry so many people, severe injuries and extreme financial loss are likely. As a result, these accidents often lead to lawsuits.
When reviewing bus crashes, both government authorities and legal professionals try to understand why these crashes occur. Determining the cause of the crash is necessary in order to create legislation that reduces the number of bus accidents, as well as to assign blame for legal purposes after a specific accident occurs. Recent research shows that one of the most common contributing factors in these situations is driver fatigue.
Acute Sleep Deficit Leads to Fatal Accidents
According to the Texarkana Gazette, acute sleep deficit was responsible for a bus accident …
Texas law prohibits texting while driving, but some safety advocates say that’s not enough to make the state’s roads safer. They’re pushing for a state law that would ban a driver’s talking on a smartphone using his or her hands while driving.
Distracted drivers kill and injure people every day.
- The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that across the U.S. in 2016, 3,450 people were killed by distracted drivers; and 391,000 were injured in vehicle accidents involving distracted drivers in 2015. An estimated 481,000 drivers are using cell phones while driving during daylight hours.
- 100,687 accidents, or 19% of all reported vehicle accidents in Texas in 2017, involved distracted driving, according to the Texas Department of Transportation. These accidents caused 444 deaths and 2,889 serious injuries in the state that year.
KXAN reports that under a proposal filed …
As 2018 winds down and you begin looking forward to 2019, remember: The best way to get the new year off to a good start is to stay safe on New Year’s Eve. Some common sense, planning ahead, and situational awareness will help ensure a smooth and festive transition from Dec. 31 to Jan. 1. These four tips are a good place to start.
- Have a house party where you control the environment.
Sometimes it makes sense to avoid strange places and unfamiliar situations—and if you want to celebrate but stay in a safe environment, what could fit the bill better than your own home? If you host festivities at your place, you get to stay in control of all the elements of the evening: the guest list, the atmosphere, and what (and how much) people are drinking. Have a …
In every seat in every vehicle sold in Texas and across the U.S. there are seat belts. They’re not optional, and there’s no extra charge for them. Whether you purchased your vehicle, are leasing it or are driving a rental, you paid for that seat belt. Why not use it? If you’re involved in an accident, using a seat belt could mean the difference between life or death, or between a serious or a minor injury, or maybe no injury at all.
Nearly 3,000 people not using seat belts were killed or seriously injured in vehicle accidents in Texas in 2017, reports the Texarkana Gazette. Using a seat belt improves your chances of surviving a vehicle accident by 45% to 60%. The Texas Department of Transportation Austin District is trying to increase seat belt use through a public safety …