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Are Poor San Antonio Road Conditions Increasing Traffic Accidents?

Written by Tom Crosley
Car Accidents, Vehicle Wrecks

A recent study ranked San Antonio among 25 cities in America with the worst road conditions and many traffic accidents. In 2014, the Texas Department of Transportation reported that there were 37,382 motor vehicle crashes in San Antonio. The latest figure shows a significant increase, coming in at 44,084 crashes based on data collected as of July 2015 by the city of San Antonio Transportation and Capital Improvements department.

But are poor road conditions contributing to the increasing number of traffic accidents? The answer to that question remains to be determined.

The Texas DOT makes annual pavement scorings by conducting visual observations of the roads’ conditions and using a tool called a profiler to determine the quality of riding on the pavement and when improvements will be necessary.

As part of the DOT’s pavement plan, the Center for Transportation at the University of Texas in Austin created a projection report of what “percent of lane-miles of pavement are in good or very good condition.” San Antonio roads in 2015 were rated 80% in good condition, according to the DOT scoring scale. However, by 2017, the 80% rating is predicted to decline to about 73%.

There are many reasons to consider poor road conditions as a contributing factor for the increased number of traffic accidents. For example, poor road conditions cause more wear and tear on a vehicle, which could affect a vehicle’s performance. In fact, motorists in San Antonio pay more than $800 annually on additional vehicle maintenance according to TRIP, a nonprofit national transportation group based in Washington, DC.

TRIP also reported in 2013 that San Antonio had 2 of the top 5 most congested roads in Texas. Furthermore, San Antonio is a city with abundant truck traffic, mainly on Interstate Highway 35 (IH-35), as well as excessive car congestion, particularly on IH-410, the stretch of road connecting between the San Antonio International Airport at US-281 and IH-35. When highways are traveled at full capacity, the congestion negatively impacts the integrity of the pavement. Also, the likelihood of more fender-benders and other accidents increases with higher traffic volumes.

If you have been in a traffic accident, be sure to take photos of the vehicles involved, road signage, and the condition of the road surrounding the area where the accident took place. To ensure that you or someone you love has excellent representation for your accident and personal injury claim, please contact the experienced lawyers at Crosley Law Firm to get a free case review and consultation. Call 210-354-4500 or fill out a convenient form on our website.


100 congested roadways. (2015, October 29). Texas Department of Transportation. Retrieved from http://www.txdot.gov/inside-txdot/projects/100-congested-roadways.html

Bumpy roads ahead: America’s roughest roads and strategies to make our roads smoother. (2015, July). TRIP. Retrieved from http://www.tripnet.org/docs/Urban_Roads_TRIP_Report_Appendix_C_July_2015.pdf

Crashes and injuries in cities and towns. (2015, May 20). Texas Department of Transportation. Retrieved from: http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot/trf/crash-statistics/2014/13.pdf

Narvaez, S. (2013, January 18). San Antonio traffic congestion makes top 5 “most pressing” in Texas. WOAI 1200 News Radio. Retrieved from http://www.tripnet.org/docs/TX_San_Antonio_WOAI_1200_News_Radio_011813.pdf

Planned projects to be let. (August 2014). Texas Department of Transportation. Retrieved from http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot-info/rider14l/fy-2014-planned-projects.pdf

Ruff, J. (2015, July 25). Report: San Antonio has some of the worst roads. mySA. Retrieved from http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/local/traffic/article/Report-San-Antonio-has-some-of-the-worst-roads-6405647.php

Vision zero San Antonio: Drive safe. Bike safe. Walk safe. (2016). City of San Antonio. Retrieved from http://www.sanantonio.gov/portals/0/files/tci/VisionZeroE-Brochure.pdf

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