When it comes to motor vehicles, many people see them as a necessity more so than a convenience. Without vehicles, most people could not get to work or any daily appointments. Unfortunately, every time a person gets behind the wheel, they risk getting into a serious accident that could result in life-altering injuries or even death. According to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), 22,383 people were killed and over two million people were injured in vehicle accidents in 2013.
What Are the 10 Most Common Causes of Car Accidents in the United States?
While many people drive safely and defensively, they still share the road with other drivers who are not so careful. The following are 10 common causes of car accidents, in no particular order. Spoiler alert: most of these causes are the result of negligent or neglectful driving:
- Distracted driving. This includes talking on a cellphone, texting, eating, changing the music, using a GPS device, and talking to passengers. Drivers cannot give their full attention to driving when doing these things—and all too often, accidents result.
- Speeding. Driving over the speed limit is never safe, but it can be especially deadly when driving 10 to 20 miles over the speed limit on the highway.
- Drunk driving. Even a small amount of alcohol can impair a driver’s ability to function and react to situations on the road.
- Reckless driving. This includes a wide range of unsafe driving practices, such as changing lanes too quickly, excessive speeding, and engaging in aggressive driving such as tailgating.
- Driving too fast for weather conditions. When it rains, the roads can become slippery and dangerous. Oftentimes, drivers don’t realize how slick the roads are at the start of a rain storm. When drivers don’t slow down they can skid or spin out of control while braking.
- Running red lights. Drivers who run red lights are often speeding. When drivers run a red light or a stop sign they can cause sideswipe and side-impact accidents with unsuspecting motorists.
- Unsafe driving by teens. Many teenagers are inexperienced drivers that do not always know what to do in dangerous driving conditions. In addition, many teenage drivers engage in distracted driving practices such as talking on cellphones or texting while driving.
- Driving during the night. During the night it is harder to see hazards up ahead—increasing the risk of a wreck. As a person ages, his vision could decline, making it difficult to see in general—even more so when driving at night.
- Changing lanes. Changing lanes when driving is something that all drivers have to learn before receiving their licenses. However, an accident can occur if a driver doesn’t use his turn signal to warn other drivers, fails to check his blind spot, or passes another driver while in the wrong lane.
- Driving the wrong way. Driving the wrong way on a one-way street endangers everyone on the road and could lead to a very serious accident.
Even if you do not engage in these practices, the motorists sharing the road with you may not be as careful. You could suffer life-changing injuries, such as spinal cord injuries, paralysis, internal organ damage, head and brain injuries, and serious fractures. However, the negligent driver who caused your crash could be responsible for your medical bills, lost wages, emotional trauma, and more.
If you or a family member has been injured in an automobile accident caused by another driver we may be help you. Fill out our online form to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.