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TxDOT says "Drive Friendly. Drive Safe." - 12 News KBMT and K-JAC. News, Weather and Sports for SE Texas

TxDOT says "Drive Friendly. Drive Safe."

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In the past couple weeks alone we've had several accidents involving cars and pedestrians.

Texas is known for the motto "drive friendly," but this August the Texas Department of Transportation says that won't be enough, motorists have to remember to also drive safe.

"What we're trying to do in this campaign is to bring an awareness to not just what's in front of you but what's around you, what's behind you, just really being careful on the roadway in general," said Marc Shepherd with TxDOT.

And local motorists like Wayne Barfield say TxDOT's "Drive friendly. Drive safe." is an important initiative.

"Pedestrian or bicyclist doesn't have too much of a chance against a car," said Barfield.

TxDOT says it's an on going problem, we continue to see high numbers of crashes and fatalities involving pedestrians, bicyclists and work zones year after year.

In 2010 on average a pedestrian was killed every two hours and injured every eight minutes across the state. And last year well over 4,000 pedestrians and bicyclists were hit by vehicles in Texas, resulting in almost 500 deaths.

Marc Shepherd with TxDOT says there's a reason they begin the campaign in the last few weeks of summer.

"There's a lot of people out in the summer riding their bicycles, they're walking, schools getting ready to start," said Shepherd.

Shepherd also says the number one cause of these types of wrecks come from distracted drivers which is no surprise to Beaumont resident Nanette Cantue.

"You might have to make a sudden stop, you're texting and there it is. There's an accident that happened and somebody could've lost their life, could be their own life," said Cantue.

And TxDOT says getting back to basics when it comes to safety on the roads could save lives.

TxDOT says if you fail to follow traffic laws you will face significant consequences including fines and even jail time depending on the severity of the incident.

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