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Drivers colliding with animals on nation's fastest highway in Texas

Wandering packs of wild hogs are creating a dangerous situation on Texas' new 85-mile-per hour toll road, triggering three crashes the first evening the highway was open. KXAN's Shannon Wolfson reports.

Life in the fast lane might not be all it's talked up to be.

That's because drivers in Texas are reportedly running into wildlife on a newly opened section of the Lone Star State's Highway 130 — which has been widely touted as the fastest road in the nation with a posted speed limit of 85 mph. The 41-mile stretch of public-private toll road, which runs between Austin and San Antonio, opened to drivers on Wednesday.

The San Antonio Express-News reported that at least two hogs and a deer have been hit on the road since it opened. Officials say no drivers were injured in those incidents, according to the newspaper.


The hogs are a normal sight in the area — Texas claims the largest feral hog population in the country, according to the Express-News.

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On Thursday, a driver had minor injuries after the first vehicle rollover happened on the road close to Interstate 10, according to the Express-News. An official with the Texas Department of Public Safety told the newspaper he does not believe speed was a factor.

Just one day after the fastest highway in the nation opened, a car rolled over resulting in minor injuries. It's unknown at this point if speed was a factor. NBC's Brian Williams reports.

This toll road extension was built and is being maintained by the State Highway 130 Concession Co., according to the Express-News.

"As on any highway, we have had sporadic reports of vehicles colliding with wildlife," a spokesman for the private company, Chris Lippincott, said in a statement Friday.

Lippincott also noted that State Highway 130 "is subject to the same laws and enforcement as any state highway." He said they could not provide comment on the accidents, as they are under investigation.

The new span of toll road is intended to alleviate congestion on parts of Interstate 35, which runs parallel.

Utah is the only other state in the country with posted speeds at 80 mph, with that as the limit on portions of Interstate 15, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

With a speed limit of 85 mph, the 41-mile stretch of toll road between Austin and San Antonio could be the beginning of an autobahn concept in the U.S. NBC's Janet Shamlian reports.

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