Driving has become a necessary part of life in the United States. Although not everyone has a personal vehicle, especially those who live in big cities with access to public transportation, the vast majority of households in this country have at least one car that they use regularly. That doesn’t even include all the commercial and public transit vehicles that also occupy space on the transportation infrastructure.
With all these vehicles on the road, operating in close proximity to one another, the chances of an accident are always present. It may not even be drivers that cause a collision to occur. Obviously, no one wants to get into a car accident.
Knowing the various causes of motor vehicle accidents is crucial because it can help you avoid some of the scenarios that often lead to a collision. Here are a few of the most common causes of motor vehicle accidents.
A top concern for all motorists is when other drivers are not fully focused on the road. Plenty of distractions can cause someone to lose focus on the road. Not paying attention for even a second or two could be the difference between a safe drive and a horrible accident. Looking at your phone, noisy kids in the back seat, eating/drinking while driving, engaging in personal hygiene, or trying to grab something out of reach can all serve as distractions that cause drivers to lose focus and create a dangerous scenario on the road.
Poor Road Conditions
Not all accidents are the fault of people on the road. Sometimes, road conditions can be in bad shape, and drivers may get unlucky. For example, a deep pothole could result in a popped tire and a driver losing control of their vehicle. The first few minutes of rainfall tend to be the most dangerous with slippery roads, so use caution when it is raining and reduce your speed. Similarly, cold climates can experience ice and snow, causing the surface to have far less grip than usual. Braking and turning can quickly turn into an uncontrolled slide in these situations. Unfortunately, all you can do with poor road conditions is use more caution when you know they are present.
You knew it was coming at some point. Drivers going too fast are a top cause of car accidents. Whether they are above the speed limit on a length of the road, speeding through an intersection to catch a light, or zooming out in front of fast-approaching cars from a side road or driveway, speedsters cause a huge percentage of motor vehicle accidents. The point of a speed limit is to ensure all drivers are in control of their vehicles, and when people drive too fast, other motorists are usually not expecting them to be where they are. Many car accident injuries are the result of one or more drivers moving too quickly while on the road.
Recklessness Near Large Vehicles
Some people just do not understand the concepts of momentum and inertia. Smaller cars are quite maneuverable, especially compared to other vehicles like tanker trucks or buses. Many may underestimate how much space is needed for a large vehicle to stop or turn effectively. A car cutting in front of an eighteen-wheeler and then hitting the brakes to slow down for an off-ramp is unlikely to escape an incredibly damaging fender bender because that truck takes a lot longer to slow down.
Accidents involving large vehicles can be devastating, so it is important to be even more cautious when driving near these models, especially since they have limited visibility. For example, Nashville tanker truck accidents are quite common and dangerous since they often contain gases or fluids that can be harmful after a wreck. As a general rule, when driving near big vehicles, just be more careful.
Driving Under the Influence
Unfortunately, many people get behind the wheel of a vehicle when they are impaired by either drugs or alcohol. Driving while under the influence of these substances can slow your reaction time or make it harder for you to assess what is happening around you. These types of drivers often cause accidents that are far more harmful to the victims than to themselves. If you have these substances in your system, have a designated driver or wait until your system has had time to clear them out before operating a vehicle. Additionally, if you notice someone else wanting to drive who is clearly inebriated, stop them.
Be Safe Out There
Vehicles are heavy machines and there are thousands of them on the road at any given time in your state. This puts everyone at risk if they are not all behaving carefully and safely. Follow the rules of the road, practice defensive driving, and be on the lookout for the scenarios mentioned above so that you can avoid being involved in a motor vehicle accident that could cost you your car, your savings, or even your life.