Texas is a big energy-producing state with a lot of big trucks. Semis, trailers and tankers mix with rural farmers and ranchers to produce heavy truck traffic in the state’s energy sectors. The Energy Sector Safety Campaign is under the umbrella of Be Safe. Drive Smart. and focuses on reminding drivers to be extra cautious when driving through Texas energy sectors.
Motorists traveling through energy sectors make up a large number of the state’s traffic fatalities. In 2018, there were 199,428 traffic crashes in the state's five major oil and gas production regions, resulting in 1,680 fatalities and 6,196, serious injuries. The leading contributors for those crashes were failure to control speed and driver inattention. Below is a breakdown of crashes per energy region for 2018:
Texas oil and gas production continues to rise. Areas booming with energy-related activity typically see more traffic and large trucks on the roads which results in more traffic crashes. While just 7% of Texans live in the Permian Basin, 13% of all the state’s 2018 traffic fatalities occurred there.
Drivers should be aware of special challenges in energy work zones such as sharing the road with heavy trucks and tankers engaged in oil and gas activity. Drivers should expect the unexpected, stay alert and watch for other vehicles, especially heavy trucks that have limited sight, move at slower speeds and require a greater distance to make a full stop. Following these basic safety precautions may help to save a life:
Never drive while under the influence alcohol, drugs or while taking medications that may cause drowsiness. Move over or slow down when lights are flashing on law enforcement vehicles, emergency vehicles, tow trucks or other vehicles that may be stopped along the side of the road.
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