Serious car accidents involve a wide range of physical and emotional consequences. In some cases, injuries caused by an accident results in a fatality. In fact, car accidents cause roughly 1.25 million deaths every year. With so many car accidents being avoidable in nature, this figure is preposterous. Fatal car accidents do not just impact the driver involved – they impact the driver’s friends and family, too. It is crucial to understand how to prevent unnecessary fatality, but to do this, we must first look at what causes fatal car accidents.
Distracted driving is one of the biggest causes of car accidents overall. Distracted drivers remove their focus from the roadway, resulting in easily preventable accidents caused by the driver not being completely aware of road conditions. Different forms of distracted driving that commonly cause accidents include:
- Road rage – Road rage is not the first immediate response when considering what causes car accident fatality. However, road rage is a huge distraction for some that habitually choose to focus on their anger versus their driving. Angry drivers tend to operate their vehicle more recklessly than calm drivers. For instance, angry drivers tailgate, brake check, and even speed to prove a point or make the other drivers angry. This can cause brutal, albeit unintentional accidents.
- Texting – Texting and driving remains a dangerous issue. Texting not only means the driver’s hands are not both on the wheel – it also means that the driver must read text. Though this is an obvious aspect of texting and driving, it is the big cause of accidents in these cases. Reading takes focus and brain power that a driver should be using to operate their vehicle. Moreover, the reaction time it takes for a driver to look up from their phone is significant when trying to avoid a collision.
- Using the phone – Though hands-free technology has helped drivers prevent accidents, many drivers still manipulate their phone for various reasons during transit. Using the phone for directions, to make calls, and to play music are all seemingly harmless, but in reality, this can be extremely dangerous.
- Drunk driving – Drunk driving is dangerous because it involves the ultimate form of distraction – impairment. Drunk driving reduces your reaction time, reduces your ability to detect changes on the roadway, and prevents you from properly discriminating different traffic and driver-related contexts. For instance, a drunk driver might hear cars honking without realizing that they are the driver that is holding up traffic. Drunk driving causes fatal accidents because drunk drivers are altogether unpredictable, some even passing out at the wheel.
Basic traffic violations can cause serious injury in the right (or wrong) context.
- Speeding – Speeding creates a speed differential between you and other cars. The bigger the difference, the more severe the impact is. Speeding is fatal to both parties involved in an accident.
- Not wearing a seatbelt – Even if your trip is short, wearing a seatbelt can prevent death in car accidents. Without a seatbelt, a passenger could eject from the car, become pinned between crushed car pieces, or severely hit their head on the windshield, causing brain/head damage. Seatbelts are mandatory for good reason.
- Running red lights or stop signs – This form of negligence can be fatal for the same reason that speeding is fatal. When cruising through an intersection at a high speed to beat the light, you can cause a fatal collision that injures other cars that are just beginning to accelerate. This difference in speed is fatal for car T-boned in the middle of an intersection.
Accident-caused fatalities are often preventable, making their prevalence altogether unnecessary. Play your part in keeping Dallas’ roadways safe by maintaining focus and operating your vehicle safely.