I-20 and I-35 Rank Among Worst in the Nation
According to data gathered by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the northern
part of Texas has a somewhat ignominious honor—it’s home to two of the five deadliest
highways in America. I-20, which runs from Kent, Texas (just southeast of El Paso) through
Dallas; Jackson, Mississippi; Birmingham, Alabama; and Atlanta, before terminating in
Florence, South Carolina, has the second highest fatality rate of any major thoroughfare in the
country—about 14 fatalities for every 100 miles of roadway in 2019. Only I-95, along the East
Coast, had a higher accident rate, with nearly 15 deaths per 100 miles.
I-35, which traverses the nation from Minnesota to San Antonio, came in 5th. In 2018, the 400
mile stretch of I-35 that crosses most of Texas saw more than 20,000 traffic accidents, leading
to nearly 500 serious or catastrophic injuries and more than 150 fatalities.
Other Texas Highways with High Accident Rates
It may come as no surprise that Texas has two of the country’s most dangerous highways. After
all, the Lone Star State has nearly 700,000 miles of total highway miles, nearly twice the amount
of highway of California, where motorists have access to about 400,000 miles of interstate and
In Texas, there are 16 interstate highways and 45 U.S. highways. U.S. highways were built in the
1920s-1940s, whereas interstates were part of the infrastructure efforts of the Eisenhower
administration. Interstates have limited access and customarily have an on-off ramp. A U.S.
highway may run through a town, with stop lights or signs. In 2018, nearly 250,000 motor
vehicle accident injuries were reported on the highways and interstates in Texas.
Though I-20 and I-35 are considered the most dangerous highways in Texas, there are other
freeways, highways and interstates where driving can be treacherous:
- I-10 – Running from the Pacific Ocean (Santa Monica, California) to Jacksonville,
Florida, I-10 goes through El Paso, Houston and San Antonio. In Houston, where it
expands to 26 lanes, it’s known as the Katy Freeway. It’s the 7th most dangerous highway
- I-37 – It’s the only major highway running north from Corpus Christi to San Antonio and
is heavily traveled by 18-wheelers and other commercial trucks. Studies have shown an
increased risk of those truck drivers falling asleep behind the wheel on I-37.
- I-45 – This thoroughfare from Galveston to Dallas was studied by the NHTSA over a 6-
year-period and determined to be the second most dangerous highway in the state.
- U.S. 290 – The primary freeway connecting Austin and Houston, U.S. 290 saw more than
140 accidents and multiple fatalities in 2017
Contact the Proven Personal Injury Lawyers at Bailey & Galyen
At the law offices of Bailey & Galyen, we understand the devastating impact any type of personal
injury can have on every part of your life. We’ll aggressively protect your rights throughout the
legal process, acting as your intermediary with insurance companies and as your voice in all
meetings, hearings and legal proceedings. Contact us by email or call
our offices at 844-402-2992. Our phones are answered 24 hours a
day, seven days a week.