Despite recent prevention efforts, such as an all-offender ignition interlock law at the state level in 2015, driving under the influence remains a significant issue in Texas. The advocacy group Mothers Against Drunk Driving has collected data indicating that in 2016, drunk driving resulted in 1,438 traffic fatalities on Texas roadways. The state Department of Transportation claims that DUI causes a roadway injury or death in Texas every 20 minutes.
Texas Tag 10 challenge
The Texas Department of Transportation seeks to raise awareness of Texas traffic safety. With the holiday season coming up within the next few weeks, it wants to remind drivers to plan for a sober ride and avoid driving while intoxicated, as well as to avoid distractions (i.e., texting and cellphone use), wear seatbelts and observe the speed limit.
To that end, the TDT has attempted to leverage the power of social media by issuing the Texas Tag 10 Challenge. It urges members of the public to share the hashtag “#EndTheStreakTX” on the social media platform(s) of their choice and then tag 10 other people to do the same.
The “streak” that the hashtag refers to is the pattern of deaths that have occurred daily for years on Texas roads. The Texas Department of Transportation recently released data indicating that such deaths have occurred on a daily basis over a 19-year period, beginning in the year 2000. The average number of Texas road deaths per day is 10, according to the TDT data. Drunk driving reportedly accounts for one out of four deaths that occur in traffic accidents statewide.
The TDT reminds drivers that, with the help of the community, drunk driving accidents are totally preventable. The hope is that the social media campaign will remind drivers to make smart decisions and exercise caution while behind the wheel of a motor vehicle.