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Top Causes of Car Accidents

Car accidents are a nuisance, a danger, and an expense for anyone who is involved. Oftentimes, they don’t discriminate between those of us who are experienced or inexperienced drivers- they are caused by something out of our control. However, understanding the reasons behind most car accidents can keep you tuned into behaviors that make an accident more likely to happen inside your own as well as others’ vehicles. If you need legal advice regarding a car accident you’ve been involved in, contact us on our website to schedule an initial consultation.

Below you will find some of the top reasons car accidents occur and be advised these things can be prevented:

1. Distracted Driving. Of all the reasons fender-benders occur, this is the most common. Texts, calls, emails, and fast food are all things that take a driver’s attention away from the road. These distractions are statistically more likely to cause an accident than a driver that is speeding, missing a red light, or even drinking. 

2. Speeding. Unfortunately, many of us have a shameful speeding ticket. Some of us even have two or more. The temptation to speed to avoid being late to work or while trying to reduce hours on a road trip is often too great for drivers to realize that their speeding could be a life-altering mistake. When a driver speeds, they reduce their ability to react to sudden changes on the road. A quick reaction time is a key to avoiding accidents, so stick to the speed limit.

3. Drunk Driving. A famously deadly mistake, drunk driving also heightens the likelihood of a car accident. Unlike a sober driver, a drunk driver is unpredictable under the influence of alcohol. Regardless of their confidence to control their own vehicles, drunk drivers kill Americans every day. Thankfully, the possibility of making this mistake is eliminated by always having a designated driver. 

4. Reckless Driving. We’ve all seen a vehicle weaving between cars and rapidly switching lanes in an attempt to avoid traffic. This is reckless driving, and it puts the safety of all nearby drivers and passengers at risk. Road rage is common on our roadways due to traffic, construction, and unpredictable human behavior. Educated drivers can do their best to keep cool on the road and avoid other vehicles that drive aggressively. 

5. Rain. Inclement weather or even a light sprinkle of rain can also cause car accidents. Even the slightest amount of rain can make roads slick and tires unreliable. Especially while braking or making turns, vehicles can lose control and cause major accidents, even if a driver is going the speed limit. To avoid risks, take extra care while driving in the rain, and reduce your regular speed to accommodate more time for braking and turning. 

6. Running Red Lights. Running a red light at an intersection increases the likelihood of a side-impact collision. Sometimes called a “T-Bone,” these collisions can be especially deadly because of their tendency to directly impact drivers or passengers from the side of their vehicle.

7. Running Stop Signs. Much like running a red light, running a stop sign can cause side-impact collisions or even cause a vehicle to roll over. Wrongful deaths are unfortunately common due to those driving through stop signs. 

8. Teenage Drivers. Not every teenage driver is a wrong driver, but their lack of experience on the road is definitely a common cause of many major car accidents. Teenage drivers should remain focused on the road and make sure to research driving laws and accident avoidance behaviors, such as those in this article. This will prepare them for their first difficulties on the road and prevent frustrating consequences.

9. Design Defects. Many notable automakers such as Toyota, Ford, and more, have recalled defective parts for their possibility of harming drivers. Staying up-to-date on all recalls or updates on your vehicle can eliminate accidents that happen due to faulty components.

10. Unsafe Lane Changes. Blind spots are often intensified while making lane changes, especially in crowded traffic conditions. Be sure to keep your attention on other vehicles and reduce speed to increase reaction time, and avoid accidents that happen due to an improper lane change.

11. Wrong-way Driving. This one is pretty straightforward- going down a road the wrong way vastly increases the likelihood of an accident. Thankfully there is usually appropriate signage to warn drivers what routes they should not travel down in both directions.

12. Improper Turns. Understanding the appropriate right-of-way dynamic on the road is important at all times. Unexpected turns or unexpected vehicles can make a quick turn into a wrongful death accident.

13. Tailgating. Not all drivers, but some, tailgate. Road rage can get the best of those who aren’t accustomed to patience on the road and that drive too closely behind other vehicles. When the vehicle in front of them has to brake, their reaction time is eliminated, and an accident is likely to happen. Maintaining appropriate distance between cars is essential to avoiding this opportunity.

14. Driving Under the Influence of Drugs. Drunk driving isn’t the only kind of impairment that causes deadly car accidents. Drivers who are on drugs also do not have the ability to maintain control of their vehicles to the extent that they should, regardless of their opinion on the matter. 

15. Ice. Ice is nearly invisible when it’s at its most deadly. Black ice on roadways can be hard to see and will cause a vehicle to lose control as it drives over the slippery deposit at any speed. To reduce the risks of accidents caused by ice, eliminating other risks first might be an excellent place to start. For example, if a driver has the ability to wait until the sun rises and visibility improves before driving in icy conditions, they should take the time to do so.

16. Snow. Like rain and ice, snow can be potentially deadly while impacting a roadway. Extra care while driving in the snow can help to curb the risks of an accident.

17. Road Rage. Many of the behaviors listed previously are also the cause of a driver that has a hard time controlling their emotions on the road. Conditions such as traffic, being under the influence of drugs, or unexpected road delays can cause other drivers to speed, tailgate, or do other risky behaviors that endanger themselves and others.

18. Potholes. Potholes are a sneaky nuisance and can pop tires or cause vehicles to lose control in high-traffic areas. This can make for an unavoidable accident after a vehicle has lost control of the road. To avoid potholes, extra attention can be paid to roads that are in need of or are under construction.

19. Drowsy Driving. This risky behavior is less often talked about than others. Driving while fatigued is a common cause of wrongful death on roadways because drivers can fall asleep while driving. This makes themselves as well as other drivers vulnerable to their vehicle that is out of their control.

20. Tire Blowouts. The first thing a driver should do after popping a tire is to safely pull over. Blown tires, especially for large vehicles, can be hazardous at high speeds and can cause vehicles to flip over.

Speak with a Car Accident Lawyer at Arshad, Pangere & Warring

All in all, there are many things to take from this list of behaviors that can cause car accidents. One of the most important preventative measures a driver can take to improve their and others’ safety is to just slow down. Patience, courtesy, and careful attention are all qualities that make a good driver of any age or experience.

If you were involved in a car accident, speak with an experienced car accident lawyer at Arshad, Pangere & Warring today to learn your rights and options following a car accident in Lake County, Indiana.

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