Six million auto accidents occur every year on American roads, leaving two million people with permanent or fatal injuries. This sobering statistic begs the question: what causes so many motor vehicle crashes?
Sadly, most stem from driver behavior that is well known to be dangerous. Here are five of the most common car accident causes.
- Distracted driving — This is a factor in 20 percent of crashes in which someone is injured. Texting while driving is by far the most common form of distraction, and one of the most dangerous. In fact, drivers are 23 times more likely to crash when they are texting while behind the wheel. Eating, using infotainment systems, and talking to passengers are other common types of distracted driving.
- Driving while under the influence — Alcohol is a factor in nearly 40 percent of all fatal crashes. Alcohol reduces a driver’s reaction time, impairs vision and leads to poor decision-making. The Centers for Disease Control say 29 people die every day in auto accidents involving an alcohol-impaired driver.
- Speeding — This is the main factor in about 31 percent of all traffic fatalities. Speeding is so prevalent that agencies like the National Transportation Safety Board have recommended that penalties for speeding be increased to match those for DUI, which in many states include driver’s license suspension.
- Reckless driving — Thousands of people are injured every year due to reckless acts like running red lights or stop signs, drag racing, tailgating, making improper turns, driving under the influence and driving at excessive speeds.
- Bad weather — About 21 percent of car crashes are weather-related, according to the Federal Highway Administration. Rain, snow, fog, strong winds and other environmental factors all make driving more dangerous. If you have to be on the road in adverse conditions, slow down and drive with even more caution than usual.
Even the most careful drivers have to be on guard against careless or reckless conduct by others sharing the road. At Morgan Law Firm, we work diligently to secure just monetary compensation for victims of car accidents, motorcycle accidents, truck accidents and other motor vehicle accident cases in Utah and Idaho. This includes seeking recovery under Utah’s no-fault insurance law. If you have been injured and would like to speak to an attorney, please call 208-999-1717 or contact us online. We have offices in Boise, Meridian and Middleton, Idaho and in Lehi and Ogden, Utah.