Wrong-way accidents: Texas leading nation

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According to the Texas Department of Transportation, there is a need for a solution to the high number of crashes that occur because a driver is headed the wrong way on a freeway. Some of the proposed solutions, though, do have added complications.

One solution is to put spike strips on the ramps for freeway exits. The problem with this is that those spokes are supposed to puncture the tires of those drivers who are going 5 m.p.h. There is a danger to vehicles and occupants when traveling at higher speeds. There would have to be a reduction in the speeds for exit ramps in order to use the spikes.

There are other proposed solutions, such as putting flashing LED lights on "Wrong Way" signs to make them more visible. There has also been talk of using larger signs and adding reflective tape to them. These solutions could make a difference, as 72 percent of drivers who head the wrong way do so after dark.

Another problem is that in fatal crashes between 2004 and 2009, almost 60 percent of drivers headed the wrong way had a blood alcohol concentration of .15. This was determined by the Highway Special Investigation Report. In addition, reports about wrong way drivers increase by almost 50 percent after 2 a.m. -- when the bars close.

Currently, the TxDOT says that Austin's wrong way accidents are sporadic. There are currently two research projects that are ongoing right now. The goal is to figure out how to decrease the number of people who are killed on our state's roadways. Texas is leading the nation in wrong way accidents, so something needs to be done.

If you have been injured in a wrong way crash with a negligent driver, you have a right to seek compensation. You may be able to hold the state liable, too, for not finding a solution to eliminating wrong way crashes.

Source: kxan.com, "Texas leads nation in wrong-way crashes," Claire Ricke, Feb. 22, 2016

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