As one of the leading causes of death in the United States, motor vehicle accidents concern us all. Fortunately, the vast majority of auto accidents are not fatal. Approximately 80 people are killed on US roads every day, but more than 5 million non-fatal crashes are reported annually. Fatal crashes typically involve a drunk driver, speeding, distracted driving, or inclement weather. We have listed the top 5 causes of motor vehicle accidents below. Avoid engaging in these dangerous behaviors to dramatically reduce your risk of being seriously injured or killed in a crash. Contact a Boston Motor Vehicle Accident Lawyer Today.
Top 5 Causes of Auto Accidents
- Speeding: We’ve all been guilty of driving over the speed limit at some point in our lives. Maybe you’re running late for work, or you have to get to the school bus on time. Even driving 10 miles above the speed limit increases your chances of being involved in a crash. Speed limits are set for a reason. If you’re driving too fast for a particular area, you may be unable to respond to road hazards, animals running into the road, vehicles backing out of driveways, or cars entering from blind corners. Although arriving late can be a major inconvenience, it’s certainly better than expensive property damage, painful injuries, or death.
- Distracted driving: In the age of smart phones and other electronic devices, distracted driving has become increasingly deadly. Although texting is one of the main types of distracted driving, it is far from the only type. Adjusting navigation systems or the stereo, applying make-up, talking to passengers, and talking on the phone all take your attention from the road. Even minor distractions can prove fatal. As one of the top causes of motor vehicle accidents today, distracted driving concerns all Americans. In response to this growing problem, many states have enacted laws to combat distracted driving, such as banning cell phone use while driving.
- Driving under the influence: Any amount of drugs or alcohol in your system impairs your ability to drive. Up to 20,000 people die in alcohol-related crashes every year. Avoid driving under the influence by always choosing a designated driver before you go out. The importance of this cannot be overstated. We have worked with countless clients whose lives have been forever changed because of a drunk driver.
- Fatigued driving: According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), approximately 100,000 reported crashes are due to driver fatigue every year. These result in over 1,500 deaths and about 71,000 injuries. The groups most at risk for fatigued or drowsy driving include adults between the ages of 18 and 29, adults with children in the household, men, shift workers, individuals who are sleep deprived, and those with sleep disorders
- Adverse weather conditions: Although it’s not always possible to avoid driving when the weather is bad, stay home if you can. If you must go out, take proper safety precautions to reduce your risk of an accident. Drive slowly, leave plenty of room between your car and the car ahead of you, and always wear your seatbelt. Make sure your car is prepared. Check tread and inflation of tires before leaving your driveway. Stock your vehicle with flashlights, blankets, bottles of water, extra clothes, and flares in case you have an accident or get stranded. Make sure windshield wipers are working and wiper fluid is full. Get regular inspections and maintenance on your car to check for dangerous problems or defects. If the manufacturer issues a recall, take your vehicle in to have the issue remedied, even if it seems minor.
Altman & Altman, LLP – Boston’s Motor Vehicle Accident Attorneys
If you’ve been in an accident, we can help. The legal team at Altman & Altman, LLP has been helping victims of auto accidents for more than 50 years. Contact us today for a free consultation about your case.