Accidents can happen at anytime to anyone. Accidents on U.S. roads and highways are still the most common cause of accidents of any type, with slips, trips and falls the second most likely cause. Accidents never happen without a reason and, in the case of car accidents, driver behavior is the most common cause of a crash. If you are injured in a car accident you are legally entitled to claim damages from the person or persons at fault and are not expected to bear the cost of your own injuries by yourself.
The Increasing Number of Cars Makes Accidents More Common
There are many reasons for the shocking car accident rates that still exist on our roads. Part of the reason is that the number of vehicles using the highway system continues to grow every year, despite the lean economic times and the rising cost of gas and diesel. Having a car is a status symbol and an essential way to get to college, work, do the shopping, visit friends and relatives and go on vacation. Considering the number of vehicles and the density of traffic in and around many cities it is perhaps a surprise to learn that the number of accidents has actually declined overall across the nation in the last ten to twenty years. However, the chance of an innocent person being injured or killed is still much higher than it should be.
The key reasons why accidents happen include the following:
Distracted driving – the use of electronic aids, particularly cell phones, has meant a surge in distracted driving accidents, despite legislation in many states banning cell phone use when driving. The rising use of GPS and tablet computers adds to the distracted driving accident statistics.
Tiredness – We all know that driving anywhere in the U.S. can mean long and tiring drives. There is a temptation to keep going when it would be wiser to stop and get rest or sleep.
Reckless and Aggressive Driving – When some drivers deliberately flout both common sense and road rules and drive too fast, too close, run red lights and stop signs and drive to intimidate, accidents are almost sure to happen.
Driving while under the influence of alcohol or other drugs (DUI). This is still a common reason for accidents. Sadly, even bus and truck drivers cause accidents when they know they should not drink and drive.
Defective vehicles or auto parts – this is far from being the most common reason for accidents, but is definitely a factor in some accidents. Typical components that are likely to increase the chance of an accident are worn tires or brakes and defective steering. Some vehicles have questionable safety features, such as a high center of gravity and roofs that are too weak when a rollover happens. These last two features are typical of some SUVs, for instance.
Whatever the reason for a car accident, you have the right to use the roads in safety without being put onto danger by the negligence of other road users. If you, or a member of your family, have been injured in any way in a car accident or any other type of vehicle accident you should contact a car accident attorney as soon as possible to discuss the possibility of filing a lawsuit against the person who caused the accident.