What Are the Top Ten Causes of Car Accidents?

Car accidents are extremely difficult incidents to handle, regardless of their severity. Even a minor accident can be stressful and cause property damage or minor injuries that are challenging to move on from in the days after the crash. Other car crashes, however, can have far more dire outcomes, including catastrophic injury or even death.

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The Top Ten Causes of Car Accidents in the United States

While you cannot avoid all car accidents, it’s important to remain aware of the risky driving decisions other drivers make to endanger your safety on the road. Here are ten of the most common.

  1. Distracted driving.
    Talking or texting on a cell phone is the number one cause of distracted driving. However, there are many other ways a person can shift their attention away from the road, including adjusting the music, viewing navigation, eating, or applying makeup.
  2. Speeding.
    Pushing the speed limit every now and again can feel harmless, but increased speed reduces your available reaction time and increases your stopping distance. That’s why speeding is one of the top causes of car accidents in the United States.
  3. Driving under the influence (DUI).
    Improved anti-DUI education means everyone in the US is aware that driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is extremely dangerous. Unfortunately, people choose to take the risk. In these situations, they experience impaired reaction time, slow decision-making, and more. Not only is intoxicated driving one of the top causes of car accidents, but it’s also one of the deadliest.It’s important to note that certain medications can impair drivers much like recreational substances. If you’re ever uncertain, it’s a good idea to let someone else take the wheel.
  4. Driving recklessly.
    Unsurprisingly, excessively changing lanes, executing illegal passing maneuvers, failure to slow down for corners or curves, and engaging in other aggressive actions behind the wheel, puts you at risk for a wreck. When these actions are triggered by road rage, you’re at an even higher risk. Don’t let emotions or exhilaration cloud your judgment—try cooling down before returning to the road.
  5. Poor weather conditions.
    Driving in poor weather conditions significantly increases your risk of a serious car crash. For example, a rainstorm or snowstorm can lower your visibility and make the road slippery. Of course, driving in unpleasant weather isn’talways avoidable. Whenever possible, however, consider pulling over until the storm has passed.
  6. Disobeying traffic signals.
    Many drivers disobey traffic signals, despite understanding how this puts them and others on the road at risk. Keep in mind that every time you fail to obey a stop sign or traffic light, you’re risking an accident. Even if you don’t cause a car accident, getting caught disobeying traffic signals can result in a heavy fine.
  7. Vehicle defects.
    Although cars are put through intensive testing before they’re sold on the market, it’s still possible for defects to go unnoticed. Try to stay aware of vehicle recalls—if your car’s model is recalled, you’ll receive a notice you should take seriously. Another way to avoid accidents due to defects is by scheduling routine vehicle maintenance. That way, it’s possible for a professional to catch problems before they worsen and cause a car wreck.
  8. Driving at night.
    During the night, it’s much more difficult to see roadside hazards, obstacles, pedestrians, and other vehicles than in the daytime. You also risk becoming sleepy and falling asleep at the wheel. If you’re driving alone on a road without streetlights, remember to use your car’s high beams. If you need to drive late at night, take steps to remain as alert as possible or pull over to rest until you’re refreshed.
  9. Improper turns/wrong way driving.
    Even great drivers make mistakes on occasion. Unfortunately, a small mistake can lead to disastrous consequences, especially when you meet other vehicles head-on. Remain conscious of one-way street signs or similar anomalies, especially if you’re driving on an unfamiliar road. When you’re making a turn or executing a passing maneuver, respect the right-of-way, take caution while merging, and always return to the proper lane.
  10. Tailgating.
    Whether you’re frustrated about a slow driver or are simply preparing to make a passing maneuver, be wary of following too closely. If the other driver suddenly stops or slows, you may not have enough time to prevent a crash.

Marengo Personal Injury Attorneys | FGPG Helps Accident Victims in Illinois

If you’re involved in an automobile accident near Marengo, IL, caused by a negligent driver, reach out to the attorneys at Franks Gerkin Ponitz& Greeley right away. Our goal is to help our clients pursue compensation to cover their damages following a car accident. To learn more, request a consultation through our website.

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