TxDOT ‘End the Streak’ campaign aims to stop traffic deaths

TxDOT hopes to cut the number of fatalities in half by 2035, and they believe zero deaths could be possible by 2050.
Published: Nov. 7, 2022 at 6:46 PM CST|Updated: Nov. 7, 2022 at 7:05 PM CST
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TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - Nov. 7 marks 22 years since the last time no one died on any Texas roadway.

According to TxDOT, since then there have been almost 80,000 roadway fatalities across the state, and about 10 people die each day from crashes in Texas.

In an effort to make our roads safer, TxDOT is working to “end the streak” of deaths with their campaign.

TxDOT held a media event Monday to raise awareness about the campaign. 197 traffic cones were laid out to represent the number of roadway deaths in the Tyler district in 2021.

So far this year, there have already been 156 fatalities.

TxDOT Tyler District Traffic Safety Specialist Heather Singleton spoke about the trend in numbers.

“‘End the Streak Texas’ is such an important campaign because of the fact that we are having so many people die in this area. So, we’re trying to figure out what’s going on and explain to them and educate them on how many people are dying and the fact that it’s been a 22-year streak,” said Singleton.

Back in 2016, Bailee Russell was killed by a drunk driver in East Texas. Her father, Tim Russell, spoke at the media event about his family’s story and the heartbreak they have felt since that day.

“We all would give anything to be able to rewind and get that day back, but unfortunately we don’t. We can’t get that day back, but fortunately, by spreading the word, maybe we can stop that day from happening for some other families,” said Russell.

TxDOT said most fatalities are due to driving at unsafe speeds, impaired driving, distracted driving or failure to use seat belts. A demonstration was done with their “rollover convincer” which simulates what it’s like during a rollover crash.

Singleton shares what Texas can do to end the streak.

“We need to make sure we are always wearing a seat belt, no matter what location we are in the vehicle. We need to make sure we are not impaired in other ways when we drive. We need to make sure that we are going the speed limit, and we need to just make sure that we’re watching out for other people and being defensive because we can be doing all the right things but other people may not be.”

TxDOT hopes to cut the number of fatalities in half by 2035, and they believe zero deaths could be possible by 2050.