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Avoiding Danger: Top Causes of Serious Car Accidents Explained

Avoiding Danger: Top Causes of Serious Car Accidents Explained

Many drivers assume that serious car accidents will affect them, but the sad reality is that there are over 6 million car accidents reported every year in the US, with approximately 43,000 resulting in fatalities. This means that for every 1,000 miles you drive, your chances of getting into a car accident is 1 in 366. In other words, the average driver will likely get into a serious car accident every 18 years.

No driver wants to get into a car accident, and though some car accidents are unavoidable, an overwhelming majority of them could have been avoided if the proper safety precautions were taken. In the sections below, our firm will discuss the leading causes of serious car accidents and how you can avoid them.

If you find yourself in a situation where you’ve been injured by a negligent driver, we encourage you to give us a call at (845)-896-5200 or use our online contact form to schedule a free consultation to discuss your legal options. Fakhoury Law can provide you with an experienced and dedicated car accident lawyer in Dutchess County, New York and get you the settlement you deserve.

The Top Causes of Serious Car Accidents and How to Avoid Them

1. Driving Under the Influence

It should come as no surprise that driving under hte influence is the leading cause of serious accidents. According to the National Highway Traffic Administration, about 32% of all car crash fatalities in 2022 were the result of a driver operating a vehicle under the influence of drugs and alcohol. The remedy for causing an accident while under the influence should be obvious – don’t get behind the wheel of a car if you’ve been consuming drugs or alcohol. Avoiding other drivers who are under the influence is a little more challenging. If you suspect that someone on the road is under the influence, do your best to give them a wide berth and watch them cautiously. If possible, pull over to let them pass or get a safe distance away from you.

2. Speeding

Speeding also significantly contributes to the severity of car accidents. In 2022, speeding was a factor in 29% of all traffic fatalities, resulting in 12,151 deaths. Speeding reduces a driver’s ability to react to sudden changes in traffic conditions and increases the force of impact during a collision, leading to more severe injuries and fatalities. To avoid serious injury or death, avoid speeding and plan your trips ahead of time accounting for the amount of time it should realistically get you from Point A to Point B so that you resist the temptation to speed. Avoid collisions with speeders by allowing them to pass you.

3. Weather Conditions

Adverse weather conditions, such as rain, snow, fog, and ice, contribute to a significant number of car accidents each year. Weather-related crashes account for approximately 21% of all vehicle crashes annually, leading to nearly 5,000 fatalities and around 418,000 injuries, according to the Department of Transportation. These conditions can reduce visibility, decrease traction on the road, and make it more challenging to control a vehicle. To avoid weather-related accidents, drivers should reduce their speed, increase following distance, and ensure their vehicle is well-maintained with appropriate tires and functioning brakes. Staying updated with weather forecasts and avoiding unnecessary travel during severe weather can also help prevent accidents.

4. Distracted Driving

Driving under the influence kills more people, but distracted driving is still a very significant cause of fatalities contributing to over 8% of all fatal car crash deaths. As you may be able to anticipate, cell phones are one of the leading causes of distracted driving accidents. To be on the safe side, always switch your phone off while driving if you can, and never answer phone calls or texts while in the car. As with spotting intoxicated drivers, if you spot a driver who is distracted, give them plenty of distance or pull over to let them pass.

What Do I Do If I’ve Been in a Car Accident in New York?

Most people do their best to avoid accidents, though some are more cautius than others. You may be the safest driver in the world but unfortunately, that won’t stop you from being hit by someone who is negligent or aggressive. If you find yourself in a serious car accident, remain calm and take the following actions:

  • Ensure Safety: First and foremost, check yourself and others involved in the accident for injuries. If anyone is injured, call 911 immediately for medical assistance. If possible and safe to do so, move your vehicle to the side of the road to prevent further accidents and obstruction of traffic.
  • Exchange Information: Exchange contact and insurance information with the other driver(s) involved in the accident. Gather names, addresses, phone numbers, insurance policy details, and vehicle information (make, model, license plate number). Do not admit fault and only give information that is required of you.
  • Document the Scene: Take photos of the accident scene, including vehicle damage, road conditions, skid marks, and any relevant signage or landmarks. This documentation can be crucial for insurance claims and legal purposes.
  • Report the Accident: In New York, you must report any accident that causes property damage amounting to $1,000 or more, injuries, or death to the police within 10 days. Call 911 or the local police department to report the accident.
  • Seek Medical Attention: Even if you don’t initially feel injured, it’s important to seek medical attention promptly. Some injuries may not be immediately apparent but could worsen over time.
  • Notify Your Insurance Company: Contact your insurance company as soon as possible to report the accident. Provide them with the details of the accident and follow their instructions for filing a claim. Again, only give your insurance company the information that you are required to give. If you are unsure of your obligations when communicating with an insurance company, call a car accident lawyer in Dutchess County, New York.

Talk to A Car Accident Lawyer in Dutchess County, New York

Once you’ve taken care of the steps above, the final step, and the most pertinent to your legal rights, is to contact a car accident lawyer in Dutchess County, New York. Fakhoury Law specializes in helping injured drivers secure fair compensation for their injuries and the injuries of their loved ones from negligent drivers who drive dangerously and without care for those around them. We have been practicing law in the Fishkill, NY area for over 15 years and have helped our clients obtain millions in personal injury settlements. Don’t delay your free consultation – there is only a limited window of time for filing personal injury suits. Call us at (845)-896-5200 or use our online contact form to get started.

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