Top Causes of Car Accidents
According to the World Health Organization, about 1.35 million people die annually from road traffic crashes. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported about 37,461 people were killed in motor vehicle crashes in 2016. That is an average of 102 per day! No one wants to be thinking about these statistics when they are behind the wheel. You just want to get to work or drop your kids off at school. However, it is important to understand the top causes of car accidents so that you can avoid them. Fortunately, most car accidents are minor, but even a minor accident can cause long term consequences. We have rounded up the most common causes of car accidents here so that you can avoid them on the road.
Top 12 Causes of Car Accidents
- Distracted Driving
Recently, distracted driving is the leading cause of car accidents. Drivers get distracted by many things, from technology to food to having a bad day. Distracted driving is when a driver’s attention is diverted from the road. Examples of distracted driving are: texting, talking on the phone, reading, grooming, applying makeup, navigating GPS, adjusting the radio or climate controls. Even getting lost in thought or eating a snack counts as distracted driving. In Nevada, you can get a $250 fine for talking or texting on a hand held cell phone while driving. It only takes a split second of not paying attention to the road to cause an accident.
- Driving at Night
When the sun goes down obstacles and hazards are harder to spot. Many rural roads don’t have street lights, making it even more difficult to see what lies ahead. Driving at night nearly doubles the risk of a car accident. It is important to increase your awareness of the road and cars around you. Also make sure to use your brights when streetlights are absent.
- Drunk Driving
Drinking and driving is one of the most dangerous causes of car accidents in the U.S. It is also one of the most preventable. Driving under the influence of alcohol is not only illegal, but could also be fatal. Drunk driving accidents cause thousands of accidents a year. Even one drink can impair your vision, reaction time, and focus. If you choose to drink, have a designated driver or use a rideshare or taxi instead.
- Poor Weather Conditions
Obviously, we can’t control the weather, but we can control whether or not we drive in bad weather conditions. Dense fog, excessive or heavy rain, high winds, slick roads, hail, and snow can cause accidents. If you are already driving, it’s best to pull over and wait out the storm in a safe place. If you have to drive when roads are slick, use extra caution and awareness.
Potholes from poorly maintained roads can be dangerous. Try avoiding potholes when you can. Otherwise, you risk losing control of your car or blowing out a tire.
- Reckless Driving
The term “reckless driver” refers to a person who displays disregard for the rules of the road when driving. For example, changing lanes too quickly, speeding way over the posted limit, or driving aggressively. A driver feeling “road rage” can put themselves and others at risk of a reckless driving accident. If you feel your emotions are running high, best to wait before you get behind the wheel.
- Running Red Lights
Driving through a red light is illegal, dangerous and can cause a serious accident. No matter how much of a hurry you might be in to get somewhere, running a red light is not worth the potentially deadly consequences. Look both ways for oncoming cars as you approach a green light to protect yourself from a driver running a red light.
Speed limits are carefully researched and set to reduce road fatalities and accidents. Speeding is the second most common cause of car accidents. Driving over the posted speed limit puts you at risk for a fatal accident and, at the very least, a speeding ticket.
Sometimes impatience can cause us to drive too close to the car in front of us. However, driving so close to the car in front doesn’t allow for enough reaction time if they suddenly brake or turn. Always keep a safe distance, about one-car-length buffer for every 10mph you drive, to prevent a tailgating accident.
- Teenage Drivers
Teen drivers don’t have the experience to know what to do in unsafe conditions. Unfortunately, teenage drivers are more likely to drive under the influence of alcohol, drive with distractions, speed and tailgate. If you have a teen driver, make sure they understand how to recognize unsafe driving conditions.
- Vehicle Design Defects
We typically trust that the car we’re driving is safe, and watch out for the other drivers and roads that can be unsafe. But sometimes the vehicle itself can be the cause of an accident. Cars have many parts, some of which are discovered as defective and lead to accidents. For instance, earlier this year Honda and Toyota sent out airbag recalls for defective airbags. Although you can’t always avoid vehicle defects, you can keep on top of recalls and vehicle maintenance.
- Wrong Way Driving
If you’re driving in a new town, or driving at night and missed the signs, it’s possible to turn down a one-way street the wrong way. Your mistake might be innocent, but the consequences can be deadly. Always be sure to look out for one-way signs and other warnings to avoid wrong way driving accidents.
Now that you know the top 12 reasons leading to car accidents, you know a bit more about how to prevent them. Unfortunately, others may not be as aware, and you can become an accident victim in Las Vegas. Anthem Injury Lawyers offers you our extensive experience as car accident lawyers. You don’t have to accept the first settlement offered to you, and you don’t have to go it alone as an accident victim. Get in touch with our law firm and let our attorneys get you the compensation due you – call (702) 857-6000 now.
No matter where or why you are driving, whether it’s for a long road trip, to the corner store, in a rush to get to work, it’s important to practice standard safe driving practices. Be aware of the top causes of car accidents above. But also always wear your seat belt, follow the speed limit, and keep your eyes and ears on alert. If you can, plan ahead and leave extra time to get to your destination. Practice regular car maintenance like oil changes and tire rotations. Don’t drive distracted, drunk, or tired. If you have any doubts about whether or not it is safe to drive– don’t! Your safety is most important.
Experienced Las Vegas Personal Injury Lawyers
If you or a loved one has been in a car accident, you should speak with an experienced personal injury attorney. A personal injury lawyer can help you protect your rights. Our car accident lawyers are experienced at handling all types of car accidents. These accidents include: large trucks or SUVs, accidents involving motorcyclists and bicyclists, and accidents where there was a driver who was driving under the influence/with an elevated blood alcohol concentration (BAC).
Sometimes people are unsure if they need an attorney, or if a car accident attorney can really make a difference in receiving compensation. Car accident attorneys at our firm offer you the best opportunity to get the compensation you deserve for your injuries. It’s okay to inform yourself with some data from the Internet. But when it comes to seeking maximum compensation, you’ll want to put your case in the hands of the experts: Anthem Injury Lawyers, serving Las Vegas and vicinity. Call us today for a free case analysis: (702) 857-6000. Our law office is located in Henderson, but we work with clients all over the Las Vegas Valley. As a car accident victim, getting back to health should be your first priority: let our lawyers go to work for you and get you the compensation you deserve. Should you need us to, we can come to you. Call us today if you’ve been the victim in a car accident in the Las Vegas area.