Auto Injuries, Fatalities Down in Texas

February 10, 2010

The Insurance Council of Texas reports that the number of people injured and killed in automobile accidents in Texas has continued to decline since 2003. Both fatalities and injuries are down more than 20 percent since the Texas Department of Transportation took over record keeping of state traffic reports seven years ago.

Statistics recently released by the Texas Department of Transportation show the number of injury accidents and fatal accidents in the state have dropped in five of the last six years.

A spokesman for the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) said Texas is following a national trend. “Nationally, crash rates have fallen to historic lows,” said Russ Rader, an IIHS spokesman. Safer vehicles and roads, higher safety belt use and, currently, the economy are contributing to the lower injury and fatality rates, according to the IIHS.

Several new auto safety features not only minimize injuries in accidents, but help drivers in avoiding some collisions. More vehicles on the road today are equipped with electronic stability control systems that can help prevent loss of control and roll-overs. Other safety features on newer cars include side airbags, lane departure warnings, forward collision warnings and active head restraints.

While crashes and injuries have gone down, auto insurance rates have remained stable in Texas due to increased medical costs and the expense of repairing new vehicles, the ICT says. The National Association of Insurance Commissioner’s (NAIC) most recent report lists Texas as 19th among states in auto insurance premiums.

The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) defines a reportable motor vehicle traffic accident as any crash involving a motor vehicle on a road way, resulting in the injury or death of any person, or damage to the property of any one person to the extent of $1,000.

Source: The Insurance Council of Texas,

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