Texas not the best at social distancing, website says

Coronavirus

Unacast’s social distancing scoreboard shows Texas has decreased average distance traveled by 20%, and that’s not exactly the best in the 50 states.

TRAVIS COUNTY (KXAN) — According to Unacast, Texas deserves a “D” for social distancing.

The data Unacast uses is from GPS cellular data, and it makes up part of what they call their RealWorldGraph. It shows how people move around, and in this instance, Unacast is using it to map out how people in the country are adhering to social distancing and stay-at-home orders.

Using a typical letter grade system, the website gives Texas a “D.” As a whole, Texas has only decreased its average distances traveled by 20%. While not the worst (Idaho comes in at a 7% decrease), it’s still not great. The place that has cut down travel the most, according to the data, is Washington D.C. at 60%.

Unacast’s social distancing grading scale:

  • A: >40% decrease
  • B: 30-40% decrease
  • C: 20-30% decrease
  • D: 10-20% decrease
  • F: <10% decrease or increase

Unacast compared current location data to data collected during typical pre-pandemic movements and noted changes in total distance traveled, time spent around the house and activity clusters.

There’s a little hope for Travis County, though. With data available up to March 24, they gave the county a “B.” According to the data, the population has decreased average distances traveled by 36%.

The best county in Texas, as far as limiting travel goes, is Cottle County in the panhandle, southeast of Amarillo. Residents there have decreased their distance traveled by 54%.

The website is updated as data becomes available, and website moderators make a point that they collect data for a certain day three days afterward to get “the full picture” of movement. Then another day is taken to process the data, so that makes them about four days behind the current time.

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