According to new statistics from the Texas Department of Transportation, young Texas drivers are more likely to be killed in alcohol related car accidents than any other age group. Specifically, drivers between the age of 20 and 25 are involved in more fatal DWI accidents than any other demographic in the state, despite the fact that that age group makes up less than one-tenth of Texas’ population.

The TxDOT report states that there were 25,032 alcohol-related car accidents in 2010, which resulted in a total of 1,057 fatalities and 16,877 injuries. Approximately 24 percent of the people killed in those accidents were between the ages of 20 and 25.

According to TxDOT traffic safety specialist Irene Webster, the fact that drivers between the ages of 20 and 25 are involved in about one-fourth of all DWI fatalities is especially tragic when discussed in light of the fact that the 20-25 age group makes up just nine percent of Texas’ total population.

Those staggering statistics, Webster says, are part of the impetus behind the state’s recently executed “Drink, Drive, Go To Jail” campaign. The program, which is held every year over Labor Day weekend, marks the annual crackdown on drunk driving in Houston, Dallas, and throughout the state.

One of the campaign’s goals is to encourage drivers to think ahead and plan for a safe alternative to driving drunk, such as establishing a designated driver, calling a taxi, or simply staying put until they are sober enough to drive. Hopefully, campaigns like this will encourage safe behavior and reduce the occurrence of costly, harmful DWI accidents on Texas roads.

Source: Longview News-Journal, “TXDOT report: Young adults lead nation in DWI fatalities,” Aug. 24, 2011