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TxDOT Launches New Safety Campaign to End Streak of Deaths on Roadways

November 7 marks a grim anniversary in Texas. On this day in 2000, no one died on the roads in Texas. It hasn't happened since then.

On Thursday, the Texas Department of Transportation launched a safety campaign called #EndTheStreakTX, urging each driver to tell 10 other drivers about safety on the roads. The goal is to start a wave of safety-minded drivers.

"Today marks the 19th anniversary of the last deathless day on Texas roads," Texas Transportation Commissioner Laura Ryan said, holding back tears. "I'm here to tell you that I don't plan to see the 20th."

At a news conference in Houston, TxDOT displayed small flags to represent the 67,000 people who've been killed in crashes over the last 19 years, an average of 10 people each day.

NBC 5 rode along with Joe Ramirez, a Roadside Safety Specialist with the North Texas Tollway Authority.

"You OK," Ramirez asked a driver who had pulled on the shoulder of the road with traffic going by at 70 mph. "Just checking on you."

Ramirez spends his work day driving the tollways, checking on disabled drivers. The NTTA helps an average of 150 drivers each day. All drivers have to do is call #999 for help.

Ramirez said his number one goal is safety, and to help prevent a bad situation from getting worse.

"To get home in one piece," Ramirez said. "And help the customer the best I can get off the road."

TxDOT is challenging people to share their stories of loss using #StopTheStreakTX.

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