SAN ANGELO, Texas — At the historic Fairmount Cemetery Thursday, there was a ceremony marking a new initiative to make Texas highways safer. “End the Streak” is the effort to cut back on the number of people killed on Texas highways every year.
Since November 7th, 2000, there hasn’t been a single day without a death on a Texas roadway.
“That equates to 67,000 people that have lost their lives on a Texas roadway since 2000,” said Karen Threlkeld, Public Information Officer for TxDOT.
On the 19th “tragic anniversary” of that day, dozens gathered at Fairmount Cemetery for a mock funeral.
“It’s a cold and rainy day. It’s a fitting day. A very somber mood for us all. It’s a fitting day,” added Threlkeld.
Representatives from TxDOT, Shannon AirMed, the San Angelo Police Department, Tom Green County Sheriff’s Office and Texas Dept. of Public Safety spoke about the importance of safe driving.
“We had law enforcement partners speaking to a variety of topics to help us end the streak. We don’t want a 20th anniversary of this. One of our employees spoke today on her loved ones. It was an emotional time and we just want this to end,” continued Threlkeld.
The majority of all deadly crashes on Texas roadways are due to mistakes drivers make, such as texting and driving and drinking and driving.
Speakers at the mock funeral emphasized the importance of driving safely and obeying the law, to help “end the streak.”
“Don’t drink and drive. Don’t text and drive. It’s not worth your life. Don’t drive when you’re not feeling well, when you’re drowsy or on prescription medicine. Obey the speed limit and drive to conditions. These are all things that you can do,” suggested Threlkeld.
Here are a few stats on deaths on Texas roadways in 2018:
- 747 were killed while speeding
- 625 pedestrians were killed in traffic crashes
- 403 people were killed by distracted driving
- 1 out of 4 deaths were caused by drunk driving
- 984 unbuckled people died in traffic crashes