The statistics are not encouraging. In the last five to six years, there’s been an uptick in Texas in pedestrian and bicyclist serious injuries and death from roadway accidents. Specifically, between 2017–2021, the death toll for pedestrians climbed by 34% and by 58% for bicyclists.
EndTheStreakTX is a messaging campaign created by the Texas Department of Transportation to raise awareness among all who are on Texas roads, to encourage people to be mindful of the law and to exercise due caution.
The last day without a roadway fatality in Texas was November 7, 2000. The daily death streak has gone on for 2+ decades.
The messaging campaign focuses on driver behavior and community-mindedness, counteracting apathy and urging people to care more about those around them.
But are such messaging campaigns effective? Will words alone meaningfully reverse deadly trends on the roadways?
As attributed by Next City, a nonprofit news outlet focused on the transformation of cities, an urban planning professor at the University of Texas asserts that these messaging campaigns produce short-lived results.
Resources would be better invested, he says, by addressing present risks. They are:
- A multitude of streets without sidewalks
- A tremendous lack of bicycle lanes
- Arterial streets that don’t have center turn lanes
- Arterial streets that don’t have medians that protect against or mitigate crashes
- Important roadways that lack crossings for 1- to 2-mile stretches at a time
It’s clear, unfortunately, that pedestrians and bicyclists are an at-risk segment of the on-the-roadway population and will continue to be for some time. If you’ve been in an accident, it’s wise to consult quickly with counsel experienced in this area of the law to protect your rights and achieve the best outcome possible.