Like anywhere else, the state of Texas experiences its share of car crashes due to common dangers such as speeding, distracted driving, running red lights, and driving under the influence. Driving behaviors such as failing to yield and following another car too closely lead to rear-end collisions and pedestrian accidents, not to mention countless personal injury claims and tragic deaths. While some crashes are inevitable, many can be prevented entirely when basic collision safety practices are applied and highway laws are obeyed.
Texas Crash Safety Tips
The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) advises you to do the following to avoid a car wreck:
- Follow proper speed limits;
- Slow down when road conditions are less than ideal;
- Yield to other drivers and refrain from aggressive road rage behaviors;
- Follow at a safe distance (do not crowd other drivers);
- Always use your signal for turns and lane changes;
- Stop at red lights and stop signs every time;
- Do not drink and drive or operate your vehicle under the influence of any impairing substance; and
- Before you enter intersections, always look both ways and watch for pedestrians.
Laws and Requirements Following an Accident
Texas drivers are required by law to carry basic liability coverage in the event they do have the unfortunate experience of being in a car wreck. You can be fined up to $350 if you fail to obtain the proper coverage. Immediately after a crash, you are to call the police if there is an injury or fatality involved, or if any vehicles cannot be moved. Additionally, if one of the drivers has no insurance, you suspect they are intoxicated, or they flee the scene, you are expected to call the police right away.
It is also your responsibility to file a crash report with TxDOT within 10 days of the accident if a law enforcement officer is not investigating the scene, there are injuries, damages likely exceed $1,000, or one of the drivers attempts a hit and run, or is unlicensed or uninsured. Failure to file a report can mean a $500 fine, and that’s not counting any court costs.