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Highway Deaths Are On The Rise In Texas Oil-Producing Counties

Highway Deaths Are On The Rise In Texas Oil-Producing Counties

Injuries and fatalities caused by car accidents are a major health concern not only in Texas, but also throughout the United States. According to a recent article E&E News online, car accident fatalities in oil-producing counties throughout Texas are on the rise. Oil production in Texas is at a 40-year high, and with this oil boom, more cars and commercial trucks are using the roads in rural oil-producing counties, such as Karnes, DeWitt, and Gonzales.

For example, according to the Texas Department of Transportation, in 2009 (before the oil boom started), there were 3 traffic deaths in Karnes County, and none of the deaths involved heavy trucks or commercial vehicles. In 2013, however, this number had risen to 11 traffic fatalities and 6 of the deaths involved commercial vehicles or heavy trucks.

One reason that fatalities are up in these rural Texas counties is budget cuts to Department of Public Safety’s Highway Patrol enforcement efforts over the past five years. And these budget cuts are coming at a time when the oil industry is booming in these counties and more commercial vehicles are using the roads. The cuts in spending have also resulted in fewer traffic citations or tickets being issued. In 2010, the Texas Department of Public Safety’s Commercial Vehicle Enforcement unit issued 196,618. In 2014, the number dropped all the way down to 137,529. The lack of enforcement creates a significant driving risk and threatens the safety of Texas motorists.

Steps to Take if You Are in a Car Accident

Not only does the law require you to contact the police in certain car accident situations, but also it is important to report car accidents to protect your rights. There are certain steps that should be taken if someone is in a car accident, including:

  • Contact the police. View the police report and make the sure the report is accident before signing the report.
  • Identify any possible witnesses to the accident and obtain their contact information.
  • Take pictures of the accident scene and capture any damage to property.
  • Seek immediate medical attention and obtain any medical documentation regarding your injuries.
  • Document any injuries by taking photographs.
  • Contact an experienced Texas car and transportation accident attorney. To protect your rights, you should contact an attorney before speaking with the insurance company.

You may be able to recover damages if another driver negligently caused the car accident. Possible damages include compensation for past and future medical expenses, physical and emotional pain and suffering, and loss of wages or loss of earning capacity.

Contact a Texas Car Accident Attorney

If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident as a result of another person’s negligence, a Texas car accident attorney can help you recover damages. The car accident lawyers at Zehl & Associates have extensive experience helping car accident victims recover compensation for their injuries. From a simple car accident involving a couple parties with minor injuries to a complex mass transportation accident involving devastating fatalities, the car accident attorneys at Zehl & Associates have the experience to prosecute all types of transportation accidents.

Contact Zehl & Associates Texas car accident attorneys today for a free initial consultation and case evaluation. You can call us at 1-888-603-3636 or visit with one of our offices in Houston or Austin. Don’t wait to contact a Texas car accident attorney before it is too late.