Speed is a frequent contributor to fatal and nonfatal car crashes that take place across Texas, and studies show that the number of fatal crashes occurring statewide involving speed is on the rise. In fact, the number of speed-related fatal crashes taking place in Texas climbed steadily in recent years, with the number of speed-related traffic deaths occurring in Texas in 2022 not yet available.
Per KENS 5, the Texas Department of Transportation reported a steady increase in fatal car crashes involving speed in 2019, 2020 and 2021.
How often fatal speed-related crashes are occurring
In 2019, there were 24,436 collisions in Texas that involved speed as a contributing factor, resulting in 385 road deaths. The following year, there were 25,052 speed-involved collisions that caused 471 traffic deaths. In 2020, these numbers grew even further, with 27,239 speed-involved car wrecks causing 488 road deaths.
What might be causing the uptick
Transportation and safety officials believe several different factors are likely contributing to the increase in speed-related traffic deaths in Texas. The growing popularity of street racing is a big one. Young drivers are especially prone to engaging in this type of dangerous driving behavior. Younger drivers in general, are frequent speeders. So, some safety advocates are asking state legislators to ramp up their education and enforcement about street racing, speeding and how doing either raises fatal and nonfatal crash risks.
Transportation and safety officials also urge parents of young drivers to question their teens when they see them adding performance-enhancement parts to their vehicles, as many do so as a precursor to street racing.