Both throughout the nation and in California, far too many deaths are caused by car accidents. What are the most common causes of fatal car accidents? Read on.
The #1 Most Common Cause: Driving Under the Influence
Drunk driving, or driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol, is the cause of roughly 33% of all fatal car accidents through the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
In most states, including California, a driver is considered to be DUI if they have a blood alcohol count (BAC) of 0.08% or above.
The #2 Most Common Cause: Speeding
Driving over the speed limit is estimated to be the second most common cause of deadly crashes, resulting in roughly 30% of traffic deaths.
It’s important to be aware that speeding is a contributing cause to multiple types of accidents. Side collisions, for example, are fatal 27% of the time, partly because that category of accident includes the type termed T-bones, where a car hits another directly in the side, impacting people sitting on that side.
T-bone accidents are frequently caused by a driver going too fast to stop properly at an intersection. The driver whose turn it is pulls out, not realizing the other driver isn’t stopping.
The #3 Most Common Cause: Reckless Driving
Reckless driving is the third most common cause of traffic fatalities. This includes failure to stop at intersections, passing improperly, following other cars too close, and violating other rules of the road. Rear-end crashes, which can be caused by following other vehicles too closely, cause 29% of all accidents.
Reckless driving also includes not paying attention to weather or climate conditions. Rain can make southern California roads very dangerous, increasing the risk of hydroplaning. Smoke or fog can affect visibility, which increases the risk of collisions. Drivers need to take into account weather and climate conditions.
The #4 Most Common Cause: Distracted Driving
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), distracted driving caused 10% of all fatalities in 2015. Distracted driving can be caused by using smartphones while driving (to message, read, or talk on the phone). It can also be caused by a driver paying more attention to passengers or the passing scene than the road.
Distracted driving has been an increasing threat to motorists for at least a decade.
When You Need a Car Accident Lawyer in Los Angeles
Fatal car accidents are a tragedy, especially because so many are easily prevented.
If you or a loved one was the victim of a car accident, Sean Salamati can help. Please call the Salamati Law Firm at 800-957-9898 today to discuss your case. We are experienced personal injury and wrongful death attorneys in Los Angeles.
Your case will be reviewed by seasoned professionals and there is no charge to you for an initial consultation.
- Campanella, Joe. 5 Common Causes of Car Accidents and How to Avoid Them. The Allstate Blog. https://blog.allstate.com/common-causes-of-car-accidents/
- King, Laiza. “Top 15 Causes Of Car Accidents And How You Can Prevent Them.” Huffington Post. August 31, 2016. https://www.huffingtonpost.com/laiza-king-/top-15-causes-of-car-accidents_b_11722196.html
- United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Motor Vehicle Safety. Impaired Driving. Sobering Facts: Drunk Driving State Fact Sheets. https://www.cdc.gov/motorvehiclesafety/impaired_driving/states.html
- United States Department of Transportation. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Distracted Driving 2015. https://www.nhtsa.gov/sites/nhtsa.dot.gov/files/documents/812_381_distracteddriving2015.pdf