Energy Sector Safety Campaign
Texas Department of Transportation
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Be Safe. Drive Smart.

Texas is a big energy-producing state with a lot of big trucks. Semis, trailers and tankers mix with rural farmers and ranchers to produce heavy truck traffic in the state’s energy sectors. The Energy Sector Safety Campaign is under the umbrella of Be Safe. Drive Smart. and focuses on reminding drivers to be extra cautious when driving through Texas energy sectors.

Crash Data

Fatalities on Texas streets and highways in the state's five major oil and gas production regions in 2018 accounted for close to half of all traffic fatalities in the state. Last year, there were 198,645 traffic crashes across the state's energy regions, resulting in 1,673 fatalities and 6,179 serious injuries. The leading contributors to those crashes were failure to control speed and driver inattention. Below is a breakdown of crashes per energy region for 2018:

  • Barnett Shale: 109,597 traffic crashes resulted in 710 fatalities and 3,400 serious injuries.
  • Eagle Ford Shale: 21,443 traffic crashes resulted in 258 fatalities and 782 serious injuries.
  • Granite Wash: 8,674 traffic crashes resulted in 86 fatalities and 324 serious injuries.
  • Haynesville/Bossier Shale: 9,512 traffic crashes resulted in 134 fatalities and 352 serious injuries.
  • Permian Basin: 49,410 traffic crashes resulted in 485 fatalities and 1,321 serious injuries.

Texas continues to lead the nation in oil and gas production. Areas booming with energy-related activity typically see more traffic and large trucks on the roads which results in more traffic crashes. While just 7% of Texans live in the Permian Basin, 13% of all the state’s 2018 traffic fatalities occurred there.

Safety Tips

Energy work zones present a different environment for drivers to navigate.  Drivers should stay alert and watch for other vehicles, especially heavy trucks that have limited sight, move at slower speeds and require a greater distance to make a full stop. Following these basic safety precautions may help to save a life:

  • Always buckle up -drivers and all passngers- day and night.
  • Drive a safe speed that takes into account the amount of traffic, road conditions and weather.
  • Focus 100 percent on driving and put your phone away; now talking or texting when behind the wheel
  • Give large trucks plenty of space, be patient, and pass only when it is safe and legal to do so.
  • Obey stop signs and traffic signals.

Remember the "Move Over, Slow Down" law: Move over a lane or slow down to 20 mph below the posted speed limit when lights are flashing on a TxDOT vehicle, law enforcement vehicle, emergency vehicle, tow truck or utility vehicle stopped on the side of the road.

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