Wellborn Paluch, LLP Blog

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Most Frequent Causes of Car Accidents

What are the most common causes of serious car accidents?

Though almost every driver has experienced a fender-bender at one time or another, more serious, even fatal, accidents occur with alarming frequency. If we are to successfully prevent such tragedies, it is important that all drivers, as well as passengers and pedestrians, understand their causes. If you have been injured in a car accident in which the other driver was at fault, it is essential that you contact a competent personal injury attorney who will fight vigorously to make sure that you are fairly compensated for your medical costs, loss of wages and pain and suffering.

Much of the population believes that drivers impaired by alcohol or drugs are at the root of most car accidents, but the statistics show otherwise. Below are the causes of car accidents in order of frequency of occurrence. Most of them, it should be noted, are completely avoidable. Many are criminal.

1. Distracted Driving

Drivers whose attention is diverted from the road cause the most accidents. Diversions may include cell phone conversations, texting, eating, or events taking place inside the vehicle.

2. Speeding

Speeders have much in common with intoxicated drivers since both believe that they are able to maneuver in spite of the odds stacked against them. The faster you drive the more reaction time you will need to cope with anything unexpected. Speeding kills and increases the severity of injuries.

3. Drunk or Impaired Driving

Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs causes serious car accidents daily. Driving while impaired is not just against the law; it is immoral, putting everyone in the vehicle and on the road at terrible risk.

Though not always recognized as such, being drowsy or fatigued is another form of impairment that can and does lead to serious accidents when drivers actually fall asleep at the wheel.

4. Reckless Driving

Driving without regard to the possible actions and rights of other drivers is extremely dangerous. Besides speeding, reckless driving includes tailgating, running red lights and stop signs, changing lanes too quickly, making improper turns and wrong-way driving. Drag racing is one of the most extreme forms of reckless driving.

8. Teenaged Drivers and Elderly Drivers

Teenagers as a group are known to be reckless drivers whose own sense of immortality may give them a sense of entitlement; elderly drivers have slow reaction times and are more prone to experiencing medical events at the wheel.

9. Road Conditions

Drivers have to alter their driving to suit road conditions. Night-driving, for example, doubles the risk of a car accident occurring. Bad weather, including rain, fog, snow, ice, and high winds, requires slower speed and extra caution. Defects in the road, such a potholes or obstructions, are also problematic, as are dangerous curves.

10. Automotive Defects

A great many cars are recalled each year for defects that can cause, or often have already caused, serious, even fatal, accidents. Defective brakes, accelerators, tires or airbags have been the focus of recent recalls.

11. Other

Other fairly common causes of auto accidents are road rage incidents, animal crossings, loose objects in cars, and police chases.

While some causes of auto accidents are unpredictable and unavoidable, a great many can be prevented by driver care, mindfulness, and attention to detail. There is no excuse for reckless, irresponsible driving which puts not only the driver and his/her passengers, but the public, at great risk.

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