Car accidents are one of life’s facts. If you drive for long enough, you will probably experience one. If you don’t, you’re sure to at least pass by a collision on the road.
You can cause an accident in all kinds of ways, but you should watch out for a few particular causes. If you know about them, you can take steps to avoid them. We’ll go over some of the more common car accident causes right now.
In 2018, 2,841 people died from distracted driving. That’s a statistic that should get your attention. Distracted driving is a concept that covers a lot of ground, so let’s break it down a little further.
If you look up at a billboard while you’re driving on the highway, you’re allowing that billboard to distract you. If you try to send a text message on your smartphone or read one while driving, that counts as well.
You might let a passenger distract you. Maybe you’re arguing with someone in the passenger’s seat next to you. Perhaps you have your kids in the backseat, and they’re talking or singing. If you take your eyes off the highway or street to engage with them, you’re no longer focused on the road ahead.
You need to learn to keep your eyes focused forward while you’re driving. Any distraction can potentially cause a dangerous or fatal accident.
If you’re driving around in bad weather, it’s much easier to cause a car accident. Bad weather might encompass rainstorms, snow, sleet, hail, high winds, etc.
If you drive in bad weather, slowing down often means saving lives. Driving slowly and deliberately can help you avoid collisions. It’s much easier to avoid hitting people, vehicles, and other obstacles if you drive about half the speed that you usually do.
You might also stay home in bad weather if you can. If you need to go to work, call in and see if you can work from home instead. If you don’t have a job where you can do that, you’ll probably need to drive there, but go slowly and carefully.
If you’re going out to run errands and you can put them off, consider doing that. Staying off the roads in bad weather means you can’t cause an accident.
Mechanical breakdowns can cause accidents, and they’re fairly common as well. You might blow a tire, or the engine could stall. Maybe you’ll experience brake failure or a faulty alternator.
Your car has many parts that need to function correctly for you to avoid accidents. The wrong part stalling or failing at a crucial moment can cause you to strike another vehicle, pedestrian, cyclist, or an animal crossing the road.
It’s hard to predict when a breakdown can occur, but you can often avoid them by getting regular car maintenance. You can certainly take your car to a mechanic for a tune-up if you hear a strange noise or feel unusual vibrations.
The mechanic can check out your car and tell you anything they find. You can pay to get the mechanic to fix the part or replace it. If you do this, your chances of encountering a sudden problem aren’t nearly as high.
If you drive faster than the posted speed limit, it’s possible a cop can ticket you. You’ll need to pay that ticket, and it could also mean points on your license if you drove faster than the speed limit in a school or construction zone.
Speeding also causes accidents, though. People who set a speed limit on a road don’t pick an arbitrary number. Instead, they conducted studies to see at what speed crashes more commonly occurred.
If you follow the rules while driving, you have a better chance of stopping if a car does something dangerous in front of you or if something leaps into the road. It is better to stop the vehicle or slow it down enough to avoid an accident, and you will probably not lose control of the car, either.
If you drive a little slower and you get late, still, this is for your good. Also, if this thing bothers you then leave the house a bit earlier, if necessary, but slow down and potentially save lives.
You have probably seen drivers tailgate before. Maybe you have done this as well. When you tailgate, you ride another car’s bumper. Some tailgaters even honk at the person ahead of them or flash their lights at them.
Usually, if someone tailgates another car, they do it because they feel that vehicle needs to speed up. Maybe you do that on the highway if you’re behind someone in the fast lane and they’re only driving at the decided speed.
Remember that you have no authority to try and force someone to drive faster. If you hassle them because you think they’re driving too slowly, then you’re in the wrong, not them.
If you’re behind someone on the highway, and you think they’re driving too slowly, go around them using the passing lane. You can wait for a chance to do that by watching the traffic patterns around you.
If you tailgate another car, and they need to stop suddenly, you might slam into them if you can’t break in time. If that happens, you’re at fault. You should have left more space between you and the vehicle ahead of you.
Also, if you tailgate, you run the risk of causing a road rage incident. You don’t know if the person ahead of you has kids or an elderly passenger in the car. You don’t know if they have something delicate in the vehicle that they don’t want to damage.
If you tailgate them and cause an accident, the other driver might hop out of the car looking for a fight. You want to avoid that, so keep a safe distance from the vehicle ahead of you whenever you can.