Texas Drunk Driving Accident Statistics
Drunk driving accidents are stunningly common in Texas. Unfortunately, the Lone Star State leads the country in the number of DUIs each year. According to the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) there were 3,039 fatalities on Texas roadways in 2014. In general, 65,539 serious injury crashes occurred in Texas in 2014 with 89,270 people sustaining serious injury. In overall crashes, a total of over 250,000 people were injured. Those are terrible numbers, but they become even more shocking when you drill down into them and find out how many of these deaths and serious injuries are caused by alcohol.
Broadly, a full 1,089 of the 3,039 roadways deaths were due to intoxicated drivers. Further, there were 8,843 "serious injuries" caused in alcohol-related accidents, to say nothing of the 6,844 "other injuries" also caused by alcohol-related accidents. Keep in mind, the police who investigate these accidents don't simply assume alcohol was a contributing factor---they generally rely on blood-alcohol tests that scientifically measure how intoxicated people were, and that usually comes well after the fact. The point being that, if anything, these numbers are possibly lower than the accurate numbers of DWI incidents once you account for investigations that were not followed through, instances where suspected drunk drivers were not tested, or where the findings came back from teh toxicology lab well after the final police report had been created.
Suffice it to say, Texas has a huge problem with drunken driving accidents. In this article, our attorneys break down the alcohol related accidents in Texas and identify trends from this data.
Questions answered on this page:
- Which Texas cities have the highest rates of alcohol related accidents?
- Do Texas college towns have a higher rate of alcohol related accidents?
- What time of day are alcohol related accidents most prominent?
- How do I get compensation for lost wages?
In Texas's big cities, drunk driving numbers are terrible.
As you might expect, the bigger the city, the worse the alcohol-related fatalities. This is despite the fact that police have stepped up enforcement in recent years. The breakdown is as follows:
- Houston DWI statistics: - 85 fatal crashes; 91 fatalities; 250 serious injury crash events; 384 serious injuries sustained in those crashes
- San Antonio DWI statistics: - 58 fatal crashes; 66 fatalities; 364 serious injury crash events; 498 serious injuries sustained in those crashes
- Dallas DWI statistics: - 46 fatal crashes; 50 fatalities; 369 serious injury crash events; 549 serious injuries sustained in those crashes
- El Paso DWI statistics: - 13 fatal crashes; 16 fatalities; 142 serious injury crash events; 187 serious injuries sustained in those crashes
- Austin DWI statistics: - 24 fatal crashes; 27 fatalities; 364 serious injury crash events; 503 serious injuries sustained in those crashes
- Fort Worth DWI statistics: - 19 fatal crashes; 20 fatalities; 126 serious injury crash events; 183 serious injuries sustained in those crashes
- Corpus Christi DWI statistics: - 9 fatal crashes; 9 fatalities; 94 serious injury crash events; 137 serious injuries sustained in those crashes
Missing from these numbers are not only the many small towns throughout Texas, but also the many outlying communities of Texas's bigger cities. Just as an example, only a few of Dallas's suburbs had the following DWI deaths in 2014: Arlington (14), Carrolton (4), Garland (4), Grand Prairie (5), Plano (5), and Richardson (3). Houston and Austin's suburb numbers are in some cases even worse.
The bottom line: Texas's biggest cities have an epidemic of DWI deaths and injuries.
College towns also had a high number of DUI accidents.
Even some of the suburbs of big cities like Dallas - Frisco and Garland - had quite a high number of crashes and DWI deaths for their size, college towns "held their own." You don't have to stereotype college students to know that too much drinking and driving goes on in and around communities that primarily service colleges and universities. Those with the highest numbers were:
- Denton DWI statistics: - 3 fatal crashes; 4 fatalities; 29 serious injury crash events; 40 serious injuries sustained in those crashes
- Lubbock DWI statistics: - 8 fatal crashes; 9 fatalities; 70 serious injury crash events; 102 serious injuries sustained in those crashes
- Laredo DWI statistics: - 3 fatal crashes; 3 fatalities; 33 serious injury crash events; 47 serious injuries sustained in those crashes
- Midland DWI statistics: - 7 fatal crashes; 7 fatalities; 40 serious injury crash events; 52 serious injuries sustained in those crashes
- Waco DWI statistics: - 3 fatal crashes; 3 fatalities; 38 serious injury crash events; 53 serious injuries sustained in those crashes
When do drunk driving accident happen most frequently?
As you can imagine, the times people traditionally begin drinking alcohol mark the start of the most significant increases in drunk driving crashes. The number of DUI crashes in Texas rose as the day wore on from 4 p.m. and the hour grew later, peaking at 3 a.m. The greatest number of DUIs occurred between 2:00am and 3:00 am. Not surprisingly, the most DWI accidents and death happened on Saturday night (981 total alcohol-related accident with 41 deaths) during that that one-hour time frame.
What's most telling about these numbers is that the most deadly time is exactly when bars and restaurants have shut down and sent people on their way. There are some people who argue that bars play no role in these accidents, but the numbers show otherwise. It is, statistically speaking, rather unlikely that an individual drinks to the point of intoxication at home and then gets into their car and causes an accident. Chances are, any time you hear of a serious drunken driving crash, there is a bar or restaurant that willfully broke the laws they agreed to abide by when they obtained their liquor license.
Some additional perspective.
2014 was not a particularly special year for Texas. These numbers, all of which reflect drunk driving accident statistics in Texas for 2014, don't reflect a year where something went awry. Sadly, these numbers are fairly typical for Texas.
But to add some further perspective, consider this. In the same year, there were 1,184 murders in Texas. Clearly, murder is big problem. And while Texas cities are hardly Baltimore or Detroit when it comes to murder as an epidemic, it's safe to assume that most Texans are highly concerned about 1,000+ murders a year in our state. Shouldn't we therefore be doubly concerned about the number of drunken driving accidents since their numbers are so much higher? Perhaps there is no comparison between the two, and maybe murder is far more taboo. But the simple fact of the matter is that innocent Texans are dying every day due to drunk driving, and something's got to give.
How to bring these numbers down.
How do small towns cut down on speeding? They start pulling people over, en masse, and soon enough drivers get the message. The same thing holds true for bars. The statistical correlation between the astonishing peak in drunk driving accidents and closing time at Texas bars is more than just a correlation, it's the underlying cause.
Texas lawmakers have long ago provided citizens with the means of punishing bars who over-serve their customers to a dangerous degree. By applying these laws and suing the bars who blatantly violate the laws they swore to abide by when they obtained their liquor license, bars can be made to understand that if they insist upon breaking the law, they do so at their peril. But the problem is that most drunken driving accident victims have no familiarity with these laws, and most of them will never bring forward a claim simply because they don't know that they can.
At Grossman Law Offices, we've spent the last 25 years trying to decrease these numbers and hold all responsible parties accountable. We've always made our getting our clients their monetary recovery for losses like medical bills, lost wages (present and future), disability, funeral and burial expenses, loss of companionship, and pain and suffering our #1 goal. But we are determined to defend the rights of drunk driving accident victims and their families and making Texas roads safer in the process. So if you or a loved one have been hurt or killed by a drunk driver, call us now at (855) 326-0000 for a free and confidential consultation. At our firm, you're not just another statistic. We'll give you the personal attention and individual dedication you and your loved one deserve.
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