HOUSTON -- Wrong-way crashes like the one that killed five people Monday morning, happen an average of four times every week across the Houston area.

State figures obtained by the KHOU 11 News I-Team show that wrong-way drivers caused 4,230 crashes statewide in the last five years.

25 Percent of those crashes, 1,062, occurred in the six-county region around Houston.

42 Of those crashes were deadly.

The numbers have caught TxDOT s attention.

Quincy Allen, Deputy District Engineer with TxDOT s Houston District says addressing the problem is a significant priority.

We re very anxious, Allen admitted. I d be disingenuous to sit here and tell you safety is my top priority and not want to do something about it.

So last month, researchers hired by the state, began looking into wrong way crashes in the region.

They re looking for patterns into where the wrecks happen and why they occur, hoping it will lead to solutions that help right the problem of wrong way drivers.

If there are measures or things that need to be addressed that are confirmed or determined by this research, then we want to work on those, said Allen.

TxDOT expects to have the findings of that study sometime before Thanksgiving.

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