According to a recent study, car accidents ranked ninth out of the top ten causes of death world wide. It also ranked first among the top ten accident-caused deaths. Over 40,000 Americans die in car crashes every year. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, someone is involved in a car accident every ten seconds. It is estimated that every 12 minutes, a person dies in a car crash. Car accidents are the leading cause of death for Americans 35 years old and younger. In 2002 alone, there has been a reported 43,005 deaths caused by car accidents.
What are the leading causes of car accidents?
Car accidents can often be attributed to driver recklessness or negligence, the vehicles involved in an accident, and road and weather conditions at the time of the accident.
Driver negligence may manifest in many forms. It may be because of rubbernecking, driving under the influence of alcohol, the driverís lack of experience, or an aggressive driving behavior. Under driver negligence, rubbernecking had been reported as the top cause of car accidents. This happens when motorists stop to look at other accidents they pass by and lose concentration on the road ahead. This distraction ends up in a chain of accidents that could have been avoided. Driving under the influence of alcohol is strictly prohibited in the US. This is considered as a criminal offense and is not taken lightly. A reported forty percent of all traffic-related deaths have been attributed to driving while intoxicated. Inexperienced drivers who arenít accompanied by an adult with a valid driving license also contribute to car accidents. One quarter of reported car accidents involved teenage drivers. Aggressive driving behaviour like challenging other drivers to a street race in the middle of the road, forcing to cut into a lane, not giving way to other cars also contribute to the growing statistics of car accidents.
Defective auto parts, vehicle design, and/or car maintenance are also major causes of car accidents. Defective door latches, seat belts, airbags, seat backs, roofs, ignition systems, and fuel systems are all contributing factors in the damage caused in vehicular accidents. The overall faulty design of a car makes accidents and damages more likely. SUV designs make a car less stable on the road and four times more likely to rollover in an accident as compared to passenger cars.
Road and weather conditions.
It is understandable that this cause isnít really something man can have any control of. However choosing to come out on the road without first taking into consideration the weather and road condition may also be considered negligence on the part of the driver.
How can I avoid car accidents?
Responsible driving is the key to avoid getting yourself involved in a car accident. For teenage drivers, donít go out driving unsupervised. Avoid ingesting too much alcohol when youíre driving, not only will you be able to see the road clearer, your concentration will be better, too. Concentrate on the road, disregard any distractions while driving. If it is really necessary that you take a moment to acknowledge any distractions, park your car on a safe area and then attend to what ever needs your immediate attention. Drive defensively instead of being aggressive on the road. Always keep yourself abreast to weather conditions before going out. Make sure and check your vehicle for any problems even before you hit the road. It is better to be prepared and safe than getting into an accident on the road.