Lets end the streak

Texas Department of Public Safety—

AUSTIN – The sound of baseball and the smell of
barbecue fills a North Austin neighborhood. It’s the
start of a new summer and 14-year-old Alexei Bauereis
is walking his best friend home through a crosswalk.

Filled with the excitement only a new summer can
bring, Alexei likely didn’t see the car speeding toward
the crosswalk. The 19-year-old driver didn’t see Alexei
either, because he was changing the music on his
phone.

Alexei died instantly, along with his dream of becoming
a world class ballet dancer.

“It’s a terrible tragedy not just for the person involved
and not even just their family, but a much broader community,”
said his father, Eric Bauereis.

This November 7, Texas marks 20 years of daily
deaths on the roadways with more than 70,000 innocent
lives like Alexei’s lost to preventable fatal crashes.
Texas Transportation Commissioner Laura Ryan, a
champion for road safety and TxDOT’s #EndTheStreakTX
campaign, believes ending this streak is attainable
but will require every Texan’s commitment.

“Last year, 20 Texas counties actually had zero deaths
on their roadways – that tells me we can end the streak
of daily deaths in Texas,” Ryan said. “This is why in
2019 the Texas Transportation Commission adopted a
new goal of having zero deaths on our roadways by
2050, and to cut the number of fatalities in half by
2035. We will do our part; and we need drivers to do
theirs.”

An average of 10 people die every day in crashes in
the state.

“The effort to end the streak of daily deaths in Texas
is a shared responsibility and we are committed to including
safety enhancements in every project we build
or maintain,” said TxDOT Executive Director James
Bass. “It’s going to take education, engineering and enforcement
to get this done, and that’s why this call to
action to every Texan is so imperative.”

What we’re asking is simple: when you get behind
the wheel buckle up; pay attention and avoid all distractions
like phones; never drive under the influence
of alcohol or drugs; watch your speed, and always drive
to the conditions around you.

Because #EndTheStreakTX is a social media, grassroots
and word-of-mouth effort, Texans are being
asked to do any or all the following to raise awareness:
Post pictures on social media with this downloadable
sign displaying the hashtag #EndTheStreakTX
Use one of our social media profile filters
Join the #TexasTagTen challenge on social media
and tag ten family members or friends and encourage
them to say what they will do differently to avoid a
fatal crash on our roads.

Earlier this year, during the height of the COVID-19
pandemic, traffic levels on Texas highways dropped
nearly 44 percent in some parts of the state. This decrease
in traffic encouraged TxDOT to think the horrific
streak might finally come to an end. Instead, the
death rate was unchanged, even with fewer drivers on
Texas roads.

“We can and we must do better,” said Ryan.

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