How Bad Driving in Texas Is Affecting Workers
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UPDATED: Dec 2, 2020
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Texas is well known for its population of bad drivers. In fact, it is frequently listed in the Top 10 of states that have horrible motorists. Some research and information would suggest that the area ranks even higher on the list. Tourists who visit the state return with horror stories of navigating the roadways in Texas.
Some of the areas that Texan drivers struggle with are common driving complaints: texting while driving, not paying attention, DUIs and other distractions. Texans are also well known for driving too fast and running red lights. Texas driving can be aggressive and visitors to the state often are surprised at the widespread disregard towards basic traffic laws.
What this means for drivers in Texas is that auto insurance policies tend to be a bit higher to compensate for the risk of insuring cars in this state. Car insurance companies are in the business of making money and this can be difficult to accomplish in states where there are a high number of claims. Therefore, the cost of the insurance policy is higher to help compensate for the less than stellar driving conditions in Texas.
Legislators in Texas are aware of the problems and even created a program to encourage drivers to be safer. The Driver Responsibility Act has been in place for seven years and has required drivers with traffic violations to acquire driving points and fees for each incident. The fines associated with this program would be used to improve Texas roadways and also support local trauma centers.
However, now there are complaints that the program hurts Texas residents by increasing their financial hardship during this rough economy. In a way, the Driver Responsibility Act has backfired as many motorists are either not driving at all or driving their vehicles illegally since they lost their licenses by not being able to pay the fees associated with the program. Of the nearly $2 billion in charges, less than a billion has been paid according to the Texas Department of Public Safety.
Plus there is the legal requirement of minimum Texas car insurance that all drivers are held accountable for. Fees for not carrying the basic amount of insurance can range between $175 and $300, with increasing fees with each additional conviction.
This means that Texan drivers who need to commute to get to work but cannot afford the car insurance minimums or the fees associated with the Driver Responsibility Act could find themselves in a bind when it comes to getting and keeping a job.