Wider Roads Save Lives

Texas highways and roads are getting wider and in turn saving lives.

Wider roads could save up to 880 lives and prevent nearly 6,000 injuries over the next 20 years.

TxDOT asked the Texas Transportation Institute to look at before and after improvements on more than a thousand miles of narrow two-lane highways that had been widened.

The numbers show that on 1,159 miles of recently added highway shoulders, there were 133 fewer fatalities and 895 fewer injuries compared to prior to widening.

In 2003, voters gave the Texas Transportation Commission the authority to issue $3 billion in bonds to pay for state highway improvements.

The law stipulated that 20 percent of that amount must be used to fund projects that would reduce crashes or correct or improve hazardous locations on the state system. The Texas Legislature later increased the bonding authority to $6 billion.

One of the projects was in Texoma. FM 1740 and FM 171 out to the Clay County line was one of the roads widened.