About 90 people die in car accidents in the United States every day. Most fatal motor vehicle accidents are preventable.
The majority of fatal vehicle crashes share one or more of seven common causes.
Most common causes of fatal motor vehicle crashes
The two top causes of fatal motor vehicle crashes are driving while distracted and driving too fast. Distractions, such as texting, adjusting the radio, reaching for an object on the floor or talking on the phone can cause a driver to veer into another lane, miss stop stops and traffic signals, drive off the road or crash into other vehicles, animals, pedestrians or objects in the road.
Driving too fast both makes it more likely that a crash will occur and increases the severity of injuries suffered by people involved in a high-speed crash. The faster a vehicle is traveling when a crash occurs, the more likely it is that someone will die.
Five other factors also commonly contribute to motor vehicle fatalities:
- Driving while intoxicated
- Not wearing seatbelts
- Driving at night or during hazardous conditions
- Driving while upset or tired
- Driving a vehicle that isn’t safe
Ways to avoid a fatal accident
The majority of fatal accidents happen on weekend nights and during holiday or rush-hour traffic. Avoiding driving during these times when you can and being extra cautious when you cannot avoid it reduces your chances of being in an accident.
Additionally, you can lower your chances of being in a fatal accident by not drinking alcohol or using drugs before or during driving, avoiding distractions, complying with traffic signals and speed limits, wearing your seatbelt, driving defensively and avoiding driving during hazardous conditions.
You can not eliminate the risk of a fatal motor vehicle accident, but you can take steps to stay safer on the road.