Auto part defects, poor weather, distractions—there are countless factors that can cause an accident. However, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the vast majority of collisions involve human errors.
The NHTSA groups all driver errors into four categories:
- Recognition errors, such as taking your eyes off the road;
- Decision errors, such as speeding;
- Performance errors, such as hydroplaning; and
- Non-performance errors, such as falling asleep behind the wheel.
If you were injured due to another driver’s negligence in Alabama, turn to Morris Bart & Associates, LLC. A Birmingham accident attorney will evaluate your case to determine if you have grounds for a claim. We also have offices across Louisiana, Mississippi, and Arkansas. You may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, lost income, and noneconomic damages.
3 Deadliest Driving Errors – and How to Avoid Them
Most drivers behave responsibly behind the wheel, but all it takes is one mistake to cause a tragic wreck. These three errors are widespread—and they cause an alarming number of traffic deaths every year. Perhaps the most astounding part is how preventable all three of these errors are. None of them occur by accident or because of a careless mistake. Instead, they are all actions that drivers choose to engage in—sometimes every day.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 1,000 people are injured in accidents involving a distracted driver every day. Distraction.gov reports that 3,142 people died in distracted-driving crashes in 2019. The scary part is that distracted driving is challenging to prove, so these numbers are likely significantly underreported. The actual toll is probably much higher.
It’s no secret that texting is dangerous while driving, but distractions take many forms, such as:
- Adjusting climate and audio controls;
- Browsing social media sites;
- Eating and drinking;
- Transporting rowdy passengers; and
- Gawking at accident scenes and billboards.
In fact, distractions can occur that do not involve taking the hands off the wheel or your eyes off the road at all. These mental distractions can cause drivers to miss a hazard in front of them, fail to see a changing traffic light, or make other mistakes. Drivers need to keep their full attention on the road and avoid all three types of distractions:
Smartphones and drunk driving tend to populate the media headlines as principal causes of deadly accidents. However, speeding remains one of the most dangerous driver mistakes. It is so common that it is hardly considered bad behavior. Certainly, we’ve all exceeded the posted speed limit or driven faster than we should. Still, it’s a choice drivers make, and it can put them, their passengers, and others on the road at an increased risk of injury.
Traveling too fast for the conditions will lengthen your stopping distance, which increases the likelihood of causing a rear-end crash. Speeding also reduces the amount of time you have to react to unexpected hazards on the road. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, speeding contributed to 26 percent of traffic accident deaths in 2019.
Also, remember that accident victims suffer more severe injuries at higher speeds. When vehicles collide, the forces increase as the speed of one or both cars goes up. This can mean the difference between a relatively minor crash and serious, life-altering injuries.
Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol or Drugs
DUI convictions in Alabama come with strict consequences, including jail time, hefty fines, ignition interlock device installation, license suspension, and other penalties. Still, motorists continue to get behind the wheel after consuming alcohol. Laws in other states are similar.
According to the CDC, more than 3,000 people died in alcohol-related crashes between 2003 and 2012 in Alabama. The death rate for these accidents was higher than the national average across all age groups.
The best way to avoid drunk driving wrecks is not to drink and drive. While drunk driving is most common at night and in the early morning hours, it can occur any time of day and almost anywhere. Always be aware of the behaviors of other drivers around you and avoid passing or driving beside a driver who displays these signs of intoxication:
- Almost hitting the curb;
- Not turning on their headlights at night;
- Using the wrong turn signal;
- Tailgating; or
- Showing abnormal braking and accelerating patterns.
For a free legal consultation, call 800-537-8185
What Happens If I Am in a Car Accident?
If you are in a Gulf South car crash, you can develop a fault-based auto insurance claim and hold the negligent driver accountable. Working with a personal injury law firm will make it easier to prove that the driver committed one of the three deadliest driver errors—distracted driving, speeding, driving while intoxicated—or was otherwise legally responsible for what happened. Your attorney can handle gathering the evidence and filing your claim for you.
Your lawyer could recover compensation for you through an insurance claim or lawsuit. Your case could include expenses and losses such as:
- Current and future medical care for your injuries
- Current and future lost income
- Car repairs
- Pain and suffering
Contact Our Attorneys to Discuss Your Car Accident Case
If you were injured by a negligent driver in Alabama, contact Morris Bart & Associates, LLC. Our legal team will aggressively and compassionately represent your interests. We have 15 locations across the Gulf South and will review your case if you suffered injuries anywhere in our four-state service area. Let us assess your legal options for free.
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