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5 Dangerous and Overlooked Causes of Accidents

Posted in Car Accident on December 22, 2017

Most drivers are aware of the major causes of auto accidents. Behaviors like speeding, driving under the influence, and driving while distracted are all among the top contributing factors for car accidents. In fact, those three causes are factors in around 75 percent of fatal car accidents in the U.S. annually.

But there are far more causes of crashes than just those three. And while it’s vital to never speed, never drive when you’re over the legal limit, and avoid distractions, it’s also important to remember that driving is a highly complex task that requires undivided attention and concentration, and that there are many things that can cause crashes.

At Matt Hardin Law, we’ve represented car accident victims in Middle Tennessee for 30 years, and we know that no two accidents are alike. Many accidents have multiple contributing factors, while others have a single factor that many drivers aren’t aware of or don’t take into consideration when they get behind the wheel. Unfortunately, drivers who don’t consider all the risks associated with driving can be dangers to themselves and others.

If you or someone you love was hurt in an auto accident that was caused by a negligent driver, get in touch with our Nashville car accident lawyers today. We know what it takes to build strong claims. We’ll collect evidence that proves the other driver was at fault, and we’ll build a claim that’s designed to get you compensation for your medical bills and lost wages. Call today—just dial (615) 200-1111 or complete a free online consultation form.

Being Aware of These Risk Factors Can Help You Stay Safe

In our practice, we help victims who were hurt in a variety of auto accidents, and many of them were caused by speeding, alcohol consumption, and distraction. But there are many other causes of accidents—some of which drivers don’t consider. They include:

  1. Fatigue and sleep-deprivation – People’s lives are busy and hectic. Between working, raising children, and running a household, it seems like there’s little time for anything else, including sleep. That means that a significant number of drivers on Tennessee’s roadways are fatigued and sleep-deprived. Both conditions can cause drivers to lose concentration and be unable to focus on the task at hand, while also worsening their reaction times. In some cases, drivers may even fall asleep behind the wheel, significantly increasing their risks of being involved in crashes.
  2. Rubber-necking – Any behavior that takes your eyes and mind off the road is a form of distracted driving—including looking at accident scenes, emergency vehicles, or other things occurring around you. It can be hard to resist the temptation to look at a recent accident or watch the work of emergency responders, but just remember that taking your eyes and mind off the task at hand significantly increases your risk of a crash—even if you only do it for a moment.
  3. Road defects – Drivers often take their safety for granted when traveling in vehicles with four wheels and comfortable suspensions. But just because you may not always feel both minor and major road defects doesn’t mean they don’t put you at risk. Loose gravel can cause your tires to lose their grip, while potholes can seriously damage or even total your vehicle by causing significant front-end, tire, and engine damage. In addition, some roads are dangerous due to erosion and a lack of guard rails, especially on tight turns with drop offs, putting drivers at risk of potentially deadly accidents if they don’t navigate the turns properly.
  4. Driving with health problems – Drivers who have health problems that result in vision and hearing loss, or that make them prone to dizziness, black outs, or losing consciousness all have extremely high risks of being involved in crashes. If you or someone you love suffers from a condition that causes any of those symptoms, be sure to speak with your doctor before you get behind the wheel. You should also be extra cautious if you take medications that cause sleepiness, drowsiness, blurry vision, or fatigue, as those side effects can also increase your risk of being involved in an accident.
  5. Overconfidence – No matter how long you’ve been driving or how much experience you have, it’s vital to remember that driving is a complex task. It requires excellent vision and hearing, as well as coordination and the ability to quickly and accurately gauge speed and distance of other objects while also predicting the behavior of other drivers. When drivers go long periods without being involved in crashes, they may become overconfident and grow complacent when they get behind the wheel, causing them to focus less on safety. All it takes is one momentary lapse in judgment or concentration to cause a crash.

Around 40,000 people were killed in auto accidents in 2016, per the National Safety Council—an increase of six percent since 2015 and an increase of 14 percent since 2014. That’s the biggest two-year jump in more than five decades. And while many of those fatal accidents were due to common causes, including distracted driving, many weren’t. That’s why it’s so important to be aware of all causes of auto accidents and do your best to prevent becoming a statistic.

Why Do You Need an Auto Accident Attorney?

If you were just involved in a crash, calling an attorney may be the last thing on your mind. But it could be one of the most important phone calls you make. Getting compensation for medical bills and lost wages after a crash can be a difficult and uphill battle. And even if the insurance company agrees to pay, it’s likely to be a “lowball” settlement that won’t be enough to cover your accident-related expenses.

To make matters worse, you’ll have to deal with the insurance company while you’re trying to get better. That means making phone calls, playing phone tag, filling out paperwork, and waiting for responses for weeks or even months—all with the possibility of being turned down at the end.

At Matt Hardin Law, we believe that innocent auto accident victims shouldn’t have to worry about those things. Victims like you should focus only on getting better—not dealing with red tape and endless dead ends that insurance companies use to get people to give up. Let us take some of the stress of the accident off your shoulders. Call today and find out how we can put our three decades of experience to work for you and your loved ones.