General Information About Beaumont, Texas
Beaumont is situated on the Neches River in Southeast Texas, about 90 miles east of Houston and 30 miles inland from the Gulf of Mexico. According to the 2010 census, Beaumont had a population of 118,296, making it the twenty-fourth most populous city in the state. As the county seat of Jefferson County, Beaumont covers a total area of 85.9 square miles. It is bordered on the north by Pine Island Bayou and is within close proximity to three other islands in the Neches River near the downtown port area: Harbor, Smith and Clark.
According to the American Association of Port Authorities, Beaumont is home to the fourth-largest seaport by tonnage in the country; the Port of Beaumont includes 90 acres of open storage and 562,460 square feet of covered storage, and is the site of the U.S. Army's 842d Transportation Battalion and 56th Transportation Group.
The region's economy is driven largely by the Port of Beaumont and the numerous large industrial facilities located within the city's five-mile extraterritorial jurisdiction boundaries, such as the ExxonMobil Beaumont refinery and chemical plants, Goodyear Beaumont chemical plant, and DuPont chemical plant.
Jefferson County Trucking Accidents
According to the most recent data from the U.S. Department of Transportation, 568 fatalities occurred during 2012 in the state of Texas, each of which was the result of a wreck involving trucks weighing more than 10,000 pounds. From 2011 to 2012 in Jefferson County alone, the number of fatalities involving truck-related accidents increased by tenfold, from one to 10. These statistics are believable considering that approximately 15,000 commercial trucks travel through Beaumont each day on Interstate 10, U.S. 69 and U.S. 96.
One contributing factor to fatal crashes involving large trucks is the stopping distance that they require; despite clear road conditions and perfect brakes, these trucks require 20 to 40 percent more stopping distance than a regular vehicle.
To make matters worse, a program called "Road Check" run by the Department of Public Safety showed that nearly one third of the commercial trucks in Texas travel the highways with bald tires, inoperable safety lights, defective brakes, or intoxicated or ill-trained drivers; an even greater number of Texas' trucks do not meet federal and state road safety standards.
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