LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - As Texas marks 12 years of daily fatalities on roadways, motorist are being urged to boost safety.
TxDOT, the Texas Department of Public Safety, and law enforcement make it their goal to protect all drivers on our roads each day. East Texas News looked into the cause of these Texas fatalities and how drivers can be safe on the road.
"Sadly the last day that Texas saw no traffic fatalities was November 7, 2000," Kathi White, a public information officer for TxDOT, said.
Even sadder is the fact that most of them could all have been prevented.
Most of those fatalities were caused by drunk driving, no seat belts, or distractions like being on the phone, talking with friends, or messing with the radio, White said.
TxDOT officials feel one death on a Texas roadway is one too many.
This is an issue that hits close to home for an East Texas mother who lost her daughter in a one-car accident in 2009.
"I've been affected in a lot of different ways," Brenda Herrada said. "It's not a day goes by that I don't cry. I carry a lot of mixed emotions. It's affected our family in a lot of ways."
However, there is definitely one thing that people can do to be safer when they get into their cars. It's something Herrada can't tell people enough.
"That should be the first thing you do when you get in the vehicle is just buckle up always. I mean my number one thing is buckling up; you've got to arrive alive," Herrada said.
In order to decrease the number of deaths, Texas motorists have to drive safe and smart.
Meanwhile, TxDOT officials say they will continue to work on improving the safety of roads and highways.
"Some of the things TxDOT does in varying locations when they seem to have a high number of accidents is we look at great separation, widening narrow road ways, so with a lot of the two lane roads we've been on this track of widening those to help make them safer," White said.