A new study has found that I-45 between Dallas and Galveston is one of the most dangerous roads in the United States. Teletrac Navman, fleet tracking company, examined data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to determine the 25 most dangerous highways in the nation based on how long they are and how many deaths they had during a 3-year span.
In addition to having the second deadliest stretch of highway in the nation, Texas accounted for 7 of the 25 most dangerous roads in the nation—the most out of any other states. Florida was just behind the Lone Star State with 4 of the nation’s deadliest stretches of highway.
What the Study Revealed About Texas Highway Fatalities
The company examined fatality statistics between 2016 and 2019 and then divided them by the length of each highway. While Florida’s stretch of I-4 between Tampa and Daytona Beach was labeled the most dangerous highway with 1.134 deaths per mile, I-45 followed closely behind with 0.913 deaths per mile of road.
Researchers discovered the following about I-45:
- The Houston area contains the deadliest stretch of I-45
- The most dangerous time to be on the highway is between 2 a.m. and 3 a.m.
- October had the most fatalities
- Most deadly accidents happened on the highway on Saturdays
Notably, with 260 deaths from 2016 to 2019, I-45 had more fatalities than the I-4 in Florida. The Texan interstate ranked lower than the Floridian one only because it’s about 153 miles longer, reducing the number of deaths per mile.
Other Texas highways (and their deadliest city) on Teletrac Navman’s list:
- I-30 in Dallas (0.646 deaths per mile)
- I-10 in Houston and El Paso (0.597 deaths per mile)
- I-20 in Dallas (0.549 deaths per mile)
- I-35W in Fort Worth (0.528 deaths per mile)
- I-35E in Dallas (0.496 deaths per mile)
- US 175 in Dallas (0.446 deaths per mile)
As seen above, Dallas is the location for many of the most dangerous highways in the United States. While this information might not bode well for drivers, the study did find that many Texas roads are seeing a decline in fatalities. Highways such as I-10 (an infamously dangerous road) and US 175 have had reductions in serious accidents—they’ve dropped 6 and 17 spots down the list, respectively.
Teletrac Navman also notes that several Texas highways exited the list with this report. Highways such as I-37, US 290, and US 59 have had enough of a reduction in fatal accidents to no longer be on the list.
I-45 Is a Well-Known Danger to Motorists
Last year, Popular Mechanics labeled I-45 as the most dangerous in the nation. The publication did so by determining how many fatalities a stretch of road had per 100 miles. It found that I-45 had 56.5 deaths for every 100 miles of roadway. It cited drivers who disobey safety laws as the reason for I-45's fatality rates. Texting, drunk driving, and excessive speeding cause many deaths on this highway, especially in the Houston area.
The Deadliest Highways in the U.S. & Worldwide
Which US highway has the most deaths?
We’ve looked at which Texas highways are the most dangerous, but the nation’s deadliest highway is actually in Florida. The stretch of the I-4 from Tampa to Daytona Beach, Florida, had the highest fatality rate per mile of highway in the United States, at 1.134. Along that stretch of highway, Orlando was the deadliest city for commuters. I-4 has maintained its position as the deadliest highway in the country since 2011. I-45 in Houston came in second for the deadliest highway based on fatalities per mile, at .913, and another Florida highway, 192 in Kissimmee, was third with .867 fatalities per mile.
What state has the most dangerous highways?
According to Teletrac Navman’s analysis of traffic fatalities across the country, Florida had 4 out of the top 10 most dangerous highways in the United States. Texas and Arizona each had 2 out of the top 10.
Here is a complete list of the 10 deadliest highways in the country:
- Interstate 4 in Orlando, FL (1.134 deaths per mile)
- Interstate 45 in Houston, TX (.913 deaths per mile)
- Route 192 in Kissimmee, FL (.867 deaths per mile)
- Interstate 17 in Phoenix, AZ (.707 deaths per mile)
- Route 91 in Tampa, FL (.706 deaths per mile)
- Interstate 12 in Baton Rouge, LA (.666 deaths per mile)
- Interstate 30 in Dallas, TX (.646 deaths per mile)
- Interstate 95 in Jacksonville, FL (.637 deaths per mile)
- Interstate 19 in Sahuarita, AZ (.631 deaths per mile)
- Interstate 81 in Charlotte, NC (.613 deaths per mile)
What are the most dangerous roads in the world?
Worldwide, about 1.35 million people lose their lives in traffic accidents each year. About 32,000 traffic fatalities are reported in the United State every year, and no U.S. highways are ranked in the top 10 most dangerous roads on the planet. As of this writing, the most dangerous road in the world is the N2 Highway in Bangladesh. Stretching 178 miles from Dhaka to Sylhet, the N2 Highway was the site of 250 traffic fatalities in 2020 alone. A lack of infrastructure (narrow lanes and no center divider) and reckless driving have been blamed for the high number of deaths on this highway.
For more information on the deadliest roads, check out the following blogs:
- Most Dangerous Roads in Texas
- The Most Dangerous Highway in West Texas: US 285
- I-45: The Nation’s Deadliest Highway Is in Houston, TX
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