AUSTIN, Texas — On par with the nation, Austin is seeing more deadly crashes than in 2020.
Austin police responded to 102 fatal traffic crashes in 2021, resulting in 110 fatalities. Around this time in 2020, 76 crashes caused 81 deaths, according to police.
It's a tragic trend that's only getting worse. According to the most recent data from the Austin Transportation Department, 27 people have died in auto vs. pedestrian crashes and 54 suffered serious injuries this year.
Its data showed in 2020 and 2019, 34 pedestrians died after being hit. While Austin hasn't hit that mark, the city's most recent data does not include the three crashes involving pedestrians that happened over the weekend, all within 24 hours of each other.
Two were deadly and the third left someone in a critical condition. Austin-Travis County EMS said all of the accidents happened when it was dark.
The Transportation Department's spokesperson said two thirds of the traffic deaths this year in the city occurred during sundown between 8 p.m. and 4 a.m.
One of those deadly accidents happened on the 4500 block of Menchaca Road, just two minutes from Menchaca Road and Fort View Road, where the city's transportation department made improvements in November.
Crews laid down thicker striped paint on the crosswalk and added reflective glass beads to increase visibility. It's a pilot program that's part of Vision Zero, an effort by the city to reduce the number of people hurt or killed in crashes to zero.
Despite the alarming numbers, officials with the transportation department tell KVUE the rate of serious and deadly crashes have decreased on high injury roadways where they've made safety improvements.
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