Why is the Permian Basin such a dangerous area for drivers?

On Behalf of | Apr 28, 2024 | Personal Injury |

Many people who live and work in the Dallas-Fort Worth area find it hard to believe that this isn’t one of the most dangerous places to drive in Texas. In fact, that dubious distinction goes to the Permian Basin in West Texas.

According to a recently released report from the Texas A&M Transportation Institute, this area, which includes 20 counties in Texas and two in New Mexico, saw double the rate of fatal crashes from 2018 through 2022 as the rest of the state. That worked out to at least one fatal crash every other day. About half of these involved a commercial vehicle.

The greatest number of these crashes occurred in the counties where Midland and Odessa are located, which are the most populated areas in the Permian Basin. The lead author of the study noted that while these particular areas have about the same amount of traffic as urban areas, they also a number of single-lane roads, which are more common in rural areas

Growth of oil and gas activity

Many of the commercial vehicles in the area are picking up or delivering from oil fields, which are prevalent in the area. These drivers are often working on strict deadlines. The Permian Basin, which is the oldest oil and gas producing area in the country, has been doing more business in recent years because of new technologies like hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling.

Those who live and work in this area have been advocating for improvements to the infrastructure to widen roads and a greater law enforcement presence to deter speeders. In the meantime, it’s crucial for drivers to learn to adapt their driving behaviors to stay safe in whatever part of the state they happen to be traveling in. 

Unfortunately, that too often doesn’t happen. If you’ve suffered injuries in a crash caused by another driver, having the guidance of an experienced attorney can help you get the maximum possible compensation to cover medical bills and other expenses and damages.