8 Common Causes of Car Accidents

    Posted by Ben Davidson about 2 months ago
    Car accidents happen every day. In the United States alone, an estimated 6 million car accidents happen every year, translating to more than 40,000 fatalities. But it should also be noted that the number of car crashes has actually been declining in the past few years thanks to technology and automakers improving the safety of modern vehicles. 

    That said, nobody wants to become the next victim of a car crash. As most auto accident lawyers would agree, the best way to avoid car accidents is to be familiar with the most common causes of them. Below is a list of the 8 most common causes of car crashes and some tips on how you can prevent them

    1. Distracted Driving
    From texting, calling, eating, and talking while driving, there are plenty of causes of distracted driving. It is arguably the leading cause of car crashes in the past few years. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention notes that distracted driving caused up to nine deaths and 1,000 injuries a day in 2018. 

    The message is clear: stay off your phone and keep other activities to a minimum.

    2. Drunk Driving
    Drunk driving is another leading cause of car crashes. The CDC says alcohol-impaired driving caused up to 10,500 deaths in 2016, which accounted for 28% of traffic-related deaths in the US. It really is simple; if you drink, better take an Uber or give the car keys to a sober companion. 

    3. Reckless Driving
    Reckless driving is characterized by acts like speeding over the limit, changing lanes too quickly, or acting aggressively on the road. It is said that reckless driving causes 1 out of 3 car crash-related deaths in the United States. So, when you are behind the wheel, remain calm all the time and take your time to avoid accidents due to simple carelessness. 

    4. Rain
    Many people think that snow and ice are the deadliest driving hazards. But the truth is that rain poses the greatest weather-related driving risk! According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, rain causes more car crashes than snow in 39 out of the 50 states in the US. The best thing to do in heavy rain is to pull off the road and wait for it to stop or to delay taking a drive until the weather clears.

    5. Night Driving
    Car accidents are also more likely to happen at night, when hazards are more difficult to see. Young drivers are particularly at a higher risk of getting involved in a car accident at night. One study notes that car crashes from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. account for nearly 33% of car crashes involving teenage drivers. So, how do you reduce the risks of getting involved in a car accident at night? Always turn on your lights, not just your parking lights, and be extra alert when on the road at night.

    6. Running Red Lights
    Since we were young, we have been taught that a red light means to stop. Curiously, many drivers still tend to run red lights. This may be due to haste or simply a lack of responsibility. But no matter the reason, you should stop when the red light is on and be prepared to stop when you see it turn yellow. Understand that your life and that of other people are far more important than trying to get somewhere a few seconds sooner. 

    7. Tailgating
    Tailgating is when you get so close to a vehicle in front of your car that you have limited time to react when the other car stops. 

    One way to prevent this is to give enough space between you and the vehicle in front of your car. A good rule of thumb to follow is to give 10 feet of distance for every increment of 10 mph that you are driving. So, when you are traveling at 50 mph, the distance between your car and the vehicle you are trailing should be at least 50 feet.  

    8. Tire Blowouts
    A tire blowout happens when the tire is so damaged that it causes the driver to lose control of the vehicle. It can cause you to swerve, which is a scary thought even for the most experienced driver. One way to prevent this is to periodically check your tires’ condition.   

    And when this happens, try to remain calm and keep control of your vehicle. Pull over as soon as it is safe to do so. If you cannot change the tire yourself, you can always call for help. 

    The good news is that most car accidents are avoidable. Being aware of these 8 most common causes can help you to take steps to avoid an accident.

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