Common Car Accident Causes and How to Prevent Them

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Though new safety equipment is coming out all the time and regulations are being put in place to look after road users, car accidents are still a common cause of serious injury and even death. Even at their most minor level, they can still be a huge inconvenience and expense. So, the first step that you can take right now is to learn about some of the most common causes of accidents and ways in which you can prevent them. You may think that a lot of these are obvious, but it still helps to read through so you can take action.

Distracted Driving

Though the smartphone has brought a host of advantages along with it, you need to avoid using it when you are behind the wheel of a car. Distracted driving has been the leading cause of accidents for a number of years and a few of the other common types of diversion include eating, drinking, applying makeup and smoking. When you are driving, that is the only thing that you should be doing. Everything else can wait.

Drunk Driving

The only safe level of alcohol to consume before you take charge of a vehicle is none. Like distracted driving, the solution seems obvious, but still a lot of people pay no heed. So, if you have had anything to drink, look into public transportation options, take a taxi or give your keys to a sober friend. It is never going to be a risk that is worth taking.

Speeding

It may seem harmless enough and like something that people do all the time, but speed limits are there to prevent accidents. If you needed an extra incentive, there are so many more speed cameras and police officers looking to catch people out. If you do find yourself facing points on your license, you could look into other solutions like http://americansafetycouncil.com/content/florida-defensive-driving-course. As well as this, driving too fast decreases your fuel efficiency, meaning that you will find yourself having to fill up more often.

Reckless Driving

A lot falls under the category of reckless driving. Just a few common causes of accidents include changing lanes too quickly, driving aggressively and pulling out at junctions with little time to spare. You are better off taking a conservative approach to driving by not accelerating or braking too quickly, not following too closely behind the car in front and not paying attention to traffic signals. A good way of avoiding getting into difficulties is by giving yourself plenty of time before you make a car journey to reduce the temptation to rush around.

Poor Weather Conditions

As much as possible, you should avoid driving in poor weather conditions. However, at the times when it is unavoidable, you need to adjust your driving accordingly. Essentially, you need to take an even more conservative approach, driving below the speed limit, giving yourself extra stopping distance from the car in front and braking slowly whenever possible. If the conditions seem particularly bad, you should pull over and wait for the storm to pass.

Night Driving

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Driving during the night when your visibility is significantly reduced can result in a whole host of complications. The advice is similar to what we discussed in the point above: make sure that you take extra care and slow down. When you are on a road without street lights, make sure to use your full beam headlights unless there are approaching vehicles as you could end up dazzling the drivers.

Wrong-Way Driving or Improper Turns

Everyone makes mistakes from time to time, but any lapses in judgement when you are behind the wheel of a car can be serious. Ensure that you stay fully aware of any one-way streets and turns that you are not allowed to make. GPS systems can actually cause a lot of these issues, particularly when they are not kept up to date with the latest maps. Though they are very useful, you should avoid following them religiously. Always follow the advice listed on road signs as your first priority and use your sat nav as a supporting system.

Potholes

Potholes are extremely frustrating for all drivers as they simply can’t be avoided. If possible and you spot them far enough in advance, drive around them to prevent any damage from being caused to your car. However, don’t swerve across the road too much and end up putting yourself in the way of oncoming traffic. If you can put pressure on your local council to get the potholes filled in, this is going to be the best solution to your problem.

New Drivers

The accident statistics for new drivers are startling, and if you are a new driver or you see any on the road, you need to be especially careful. It is a good idea to take a defensive driving course to equip yourself with some extra skills for the road. If one of your children has just passed their test, you could accompany them during their first few drives rather than throwing them in at the deep end and expecting them to do everything themselves.

Tire Blowouts

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If you end up with a flat tyre, it could cause you to swerve off the road unexpectedly. If you notice that your vehicle is starting to tip to one side and you hear a strange noise coming from underneath, pull over at the earliest possible opportunity. It helps significantly if you are able to change a type yourself. This way, you won’t end up stuck by the side of the road waiting for assistance.

And there you have just a few of the most common car accident causes, as well as a few ways that you can prevent them. Obviously, you can never stay 100 percent safe on the road as you never know what other drivers are going to do. However, you can tighten up your own driving to make having an accident as unlikely as possible.

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