Connecticut has some of the safest roadways, but 100,000 automobile accidents still occur throughout the state. And despite a 50 percent drop in traffic this year, fatalities have continued to increase here. The rise in the number of traffic deaths points to a necessity to drive more attentively and cautiously. Of course, no matter how attentive or careful you are, other motorists may not be as conscientious.
What follows are six of the most common causes of automobile collisions.
1. Distracted Driving
Distracted driving is the most common cause of collision in the United States, and sadly, it is one of the most preventable. According to EndDD.org, “There were 3,477 people killed and an estimated additional 391,000 injured in crashes involving distracted drivers in 2015.” Connecticut considers distracted driving reckless driving, and state law prohibits all drivers from receiving, reading or sending text messages while behind the wheel.
While distracted driving is the most common cause of road accidents, speeding comes in at #2. In fact, having a “lead foot” causes nearly 55 percent of motor vehicle accidents in the nation. Many of us are guilty of speeding at some point or another, and reasons for it vary. For instance, we might be late for work or running late for an appointment. No matter what the reason, going over the posted speed limit increases the risk of car crashes.
3. Road Rage
Road rage is a growing trend of risky, aggressive behavior in which a motorist reacts angrily to another motorist. Furthermore, the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety announced that nearly 80 percent of drivers demonstrate road rage annually. While delays such as gridlocked traffic – and even poor driving on another motorist’s part –can send you over the edge, acting out can cause traffic accidents that can cast a very long shadow.
4. Driving While Drowsy
The CDC reports that at least one in 25 drivers admitted to falling asleep while driving. Even if drowsy drivers don’t fall asleep behind the wheel, they can have difficulty paying attention to the road and have delayed reaction times. Regardless, lack of adequate sleep and rest combined with driving is a dangerous mix. Connecticut holds drowsy drivers liable through statutory negligence if they cause a car accident.
5. Not Considering Adverse Weather Conditions
Weather variables that impact driving on roads include air temperature & humidity, wind speed, precipitation (snow, rain, etc.) and fog. Drivers have a duty to drive safely, which takes these weather variables into account, too. If you cause a wreck when it is raining, per se, and the accident report states that you were driving too fast for conditions, you can be held legally responsible. Approximately 21 percent of motor vehicle accidents each year are related to weather, so it pays to consider adverse weather conditions and adjust your driving practices accordingly.
6. Alcohol and Drug Impairment
Another common cause of automobile collisions can be attributed to drivers under the influence of alcohol and illegal & legal drugs. The National Law Review states that “on average, between one quarter and one-third of all fatal collisions on U.S. roads every year involve alcohol or drug impairment.” Prescription drugs, in particular, present a rising area of concern. Motorists that take them often trust that their healthcare providers would not have prescribed them medicine that puts them at risk when driving.
Other Factors That Cause Traffic Collisions
Although they aren’t as common, other factors such as health issues, poor car maintenance, defective tires, human error such as unsafe backing – or a combination of the above – can cause traffic collisions. Additionally, many of these factors can cause confusion or legal gray areas.
For example, if someone has a brain aneurysm that ruptured, making them crash into you, who is at fault (or is anyone at fault)? To add an extra layer of complexity to the matter, it was also discovered that their doctor released this driver, saying they were fine to drive. What then?
For questions about common and extraordinary causes of automobile accidents, an experienced car accident attorney can help.
How an Experienced Car Accident Attorney Can Help
If you are a victim of an automobile collision caused by a driver affected by any of the factors above – or any other factor for that matter – you have a legal right to compensation. An experienced automobile collision injury attorney can represent you in legal matters to secure that compensation.
The tasks an attorney performs to recover the damages victims need and deserve for their injuries and losses varies from case to case, but they will typically include:
- Investigating an auto collision to get to the root cause. Any investigations they perform usually point to one or more of the causes above and determine the at-fault party.
- Evaluating harm done to the collision victim to ensure that they pursue the maximum payment the law allows in any legal action seeking damages.
- Treating automobile collision victims with great compassion and care, while also communicating with them in easily understood terminology and language.
- Working to secure a fair and reasonable settlement for the auto collision victim’s legal claim by negotiating with any at fault parties in the automobile crash.
- Taking their client’s case to court, if necessary, to achieve the best outcome reasonably possible for their claim.
Waterbury Car Accident Lawyer
Far too often, automobile accident victims fail to realize all the legal options they are entitled to. We at The Moynahan Law Firm are dedicated to assisting injured car accident victims through all steps of the legal process. We will also make sure all your rights are protected. Our firm has over 50 years of experience with car accident cases, so let us help you with yours if you are the victim of an automobile collision. For more information or a free consultation, please contact us online or reach out to us through the following channels:
P.O. Box 2242
Waterbury, CT 06722
Office Phone: (203) 597-6364
Office Fax: (203) 597-6365
Timothy C. Moynahan is the CEO and owner of Moynahan Partners, which offers business development consultancy, identifying strategic business partnerships and funding sources. He founded and heads the Moynahan Law Firm, Waterbury, Connecticut. He is a sought-after and successful trial lawyer, earning the Super Lawyer of New England and Connecticut awards from 2009 to 2012 and Best Criminal Defense Attorney accolade in 2013.