According to statistics released in 2022 by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there were almost 43,000 fatalities in 2021 due to motor vehicle collisions. This number represents a nationwide trend. The previous year was much lower, at just under 39,000 fatalities.
Unfortunately, it seems that road-related fatalities (and accidents in general) are on the rise. It’s important to be prepared, both mentally and physically, every time you get in your car and head out on the roads, and defensive driving is becoming an ever more essential skill. What are some of the most common causes for automobile collisions? Knowledge is power, as they say, so let’s take a moment to make sure you’re well-equipped.
• Speeding. Speed limits are posted on all major roads and highways for the protection of drivers. Driving significantly faster than those around you can pose a threat to their safety, as well as your own. At higher speeds, there’s an increased risk of losing control and crashing into a building, a guardrail, or another vehicle.
• Distracted Driving. In the age of digital technology and multitasking, some drivers find it difficult to put their phone away and focus on the task at hand. Whether it’s scrolling through social media, chatting with someone via text or call, or even taking photos, smartphones can be a major problem. Driving often requires quick reflexes and self-awareness, but a distracted driver will fall short in both areas.
• Inclement Weather. From driving rain to slippery ice and snow, inclement weather has been the cause of many accidents and fatalities. The weather is frequently unpredictable, so the best thing you can do is be prepared. Brush up on your defensive driving skills, and internalize the best practices for driving in unsafe conditions.
• Intersections. Intersections are perhaps the most dangerous part of driving. Whether dictated by stop signs or traffic lights, road intersections are the site of many collisions. Follow all written traffic laws, and be prepared to drive defensively when approaching an intersection.
• Driving While Impaired. Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol can have severe consequences for the driver. These substances limit your reaction time, affect your judgement, and diminish your ability to focus. This is a recipe for disaster while on the road, and many fatalities have been linked to impaired drivers.
If you or a loved one has been the victim of an accident in which there was a fatality, then you’ll need representation from a skilled personal injury attorney. Our team here at Wayne Hardee Law would be pleased to meet with you and provide a free case evaluation. Contact us today to schedule an appointment!