You’re driving down the highway and see a wreck through your side window. You briefly wonder if everyone made it out okay as you continue on to your office. It’s only later when you have time to really sit down and think that you begin to consider how the accident occurred in the first place, knowing you will never really know.
It’s the anatomy of the car accident. We see them, we may even be involved in them, but we rarely know every detail. In the case that they are our own collisions, we can only be sure of the part we play. It’s a fact that most of us put an accident down to the reckless behavior or “idiotic” mistake of another. The truth is that we all drive in such a way that could contribute to an accident under the right set of circumstances.
There are a variety of causes of accidents, but some are more common than others. Here are six reasons behind car crashes that most collisions can be attributed to.
We’ve all done it. We come to an intersection with a red light, get ready to turn right and sort of roll our way through the stop. In all reality, the legal maneuver is to come to a full stop, look both ways and then proceed. We are more likely to roll through the right turn when we are in a familiar area. Here’s the problem:
You come to a light, knowing you’re going to turn right and begin to slow down. The light turns red, you look to your left and notice that the way is clear. As you get to the light, you slow even more, neglecting to come to a complete stop. You look to the left one more time as you turn your wheel to the right. As you look in your direction of travel again, you see that there is a cyclist or pedestrian directly in your path.
No one plans on taking a nap behind the wheel, but drivers fall asleep at an alarming rate. Experts say that people often misjudge just how tired they are. They think that they can roll down the window, slam a cup of coffee or an energy drink or even turn up the radio. None of these will work long term for someone who is fatigued.
If you don’t get enough sleep on a regular basis, you could very well fall asleep behind the wheel. If you’re tired, skip driving. If you can’t skip driving, try to take a buddy along for the ride to keep you awake.
You may believe that you are always in control of your vehicle, but you’d be surprised at just how easy it is to lose control. Most people, as it turns out, think they are far better drivers than they really are. Taking a turn to fast, speeding and aggressive maneuvering can all cause you to lose control of your car and have you careening off-road and into a tree or, perhaps worse, another vehicle.
You’re riding down the highway behind a semi. You are making a left turn and a garbage truck is blocking your view. There is something in all of us that believes if we can’t see it, it doesn’t exist. This is simply not true. Just because you can’t see it, it may still be there. The stop sign on the unfamiliar road. The red light you blew through because you couldn’t see it until it was too late. The pedestrian that pops out from behind a dumpster. Always keep your eyes open and your mind focused.
Perhaps your phone rings and you look down to see who it is with no intention of answering it. Even in those few seconds that it takes to see who’s calling, you can easily veer out of your lane. You may cross the center line and enter the path of an oncoming car. You could veer off the right side of the road and down a ditch.
Don’t let distractions take your mind off the task at hand. If you take your eyes off the road for even a moment, something could happen. The “something” that happens could prove tragic.
You know that you should see the rear license plate of the vehicle in front of you. You always make sure you follow this rule. Even at this distance, you are running the risk of bumping someone’s rear end if they come to a sudden stop.
Look for indicators that the vehicle in front of you may be slowing or stopping. If the person in front of you is driving in an odd manner, back off. If the person seems to be riding their brakes, frequently speeding up and slowing down or doesn’t seem to know where they are, hang back.
If you are involved in a car accident in South Florida, you have rights. Reach out to our office today to schedule an appointment for a free case evaluation. We will review the details of your accident and advise you of your legal rights and options. You may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, lost wages and more.