Causes of Car Accidents in Aventura

Aventura Auto Accident Lawyers

According to a 2017 article from Slate, a classic 1980 study revealed that about half of all drivers rank themselves in the top 20 percent when it comes to driver safety and skill. Of course, many of these drivers are mistaken, as noted by the nearly six-million car crashes that occur in the United States each year: more importantly, the majority of those crashes are caused by human error. Here is a look at just a few of the most common causes of car accidents.

Distracted Driving Causes Car Accidents

In 2016, distracted driving claimed the lives of 3,450 people and injured another 391,000, according to information provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention notes that around 9 people are killed and more than 1,000 are injured each day in the United States due to distracted driving. Distracted driving is described as anything that takes the driver’s focus away from the task of driving. Some common driver distractions include:

  • Texting, browsing the internet, or other activities pertaining to a cell phone
  • Eating or drinking
  • Talking to passengers in the car
  • Fiddling with the stereo or navigation system
  • Daydreaming
  • Distractions outside of the vehicle

Driver distractions come in the following categories. Note that some distractions, such as texting, are considered to be all three types of distractions simultaneously.

  • Visual distractions: Anything that takes the driver’s eyes off the roadway
  • Manual distractions: Anything that causes the driver to take his or her hands away from the wheel
  • Cognitive distractions: Anything that takes the driver’s mind off of driving.

Approximately 481,000 people across the nation are using their cell phones while driving during the daylight hours. It is estimated to take about 4.6 seconds to send a text. At 55 miles per hour, a driver has traveled the length of a football field in the 4.6 seconds it took to text. Texting while driving is now the leading cause of death among teenagers.

Speeding Increases Car Accident Risk

Speeding increases the likelihood of having an accident and being injured in an accident as it takes away some of the time that a driver needs to react to hazards in the road, increases the severity of the impact, and makes automobile protective devices such as seat belts and airbags less effective in a crash. The NHTSA defines a speed-related crash as one in which either driver was charged with a speeding-related offense or a police officer indicated that racing, driving too fast for conditions, or exceeding the posted speed limit was a contributing factor in the crash. Here are some facts about speeding:

  • About 27 percent of people who are killed in traffic accidents are killed in a crash that involves at least one speeding driver.
  • Young male drivers are most likely to be speeding at the time of a fatal crash. Nearly a third of all males aged 15-20 involved in a fatal crash in 2016 were speeding at the time the crash happened.
  • Speeding drivers are more likely to have a previous history of traffic accidents, license suspension or revocation, and speeding or other traffic convictions than non-speeding drivers. Alcohol impairment is more common among speeding drivers in fatal crashes than non-speeding drivers, with 37 percent of speeding drivers having a blood alcohol level over the legal limit.
  • Florida was among the states with the lowest percentage of traffic fatalities that were speeding-related in 2016, at 10 percent.
  • As reported by CreditDonkey.com, about 112,000 persons are ticketed each day for driving too fast. About 41 million speeding tickets are issued each year.
  • Senior citizens are less likely than any other age group to have speed-related fatal crashes.
  • About 35 percent of speed-related crashes occur on minor roadways, while about 30 percent occur on major highways or interstates.

Driving Under the Influence of Drugs or Alcohol

With its thriving nightlife, Aventura is a wonderful place to enjoy an evening on the town. However, with enjoyment also comes the risks associated with drunk or drugged driving. Information provided by the CDC states that 29 people die in the United States each day due to motor vehicle crashes that involve an alcohol-impaired driver, meaning that there is one death every 50 minutes. The cost of alcohol-related crashes to society is about $44 billion a year. Here is more information:

  • More than one million drivers were arrested in 2016 for driving under the influence of alcohol or narcotics.
  • In 2016, nearly 10,500 people died in crashes in which the driver was alcohol-impaired. This makes up about 28 percent of all traffic-related deaths in the U.S.
  • Men are more likely than women to have fatal crashes as a result of alcohol impairment.
  • Impairment is not defined by the drink, but by the amount of alcohol drunk over time.
  • Drunk driving crashes are about four times more frequent at nighttime than they are during the day.
  • 10.6 percent of 18- to 25-year-olds reported driving under the influence of illicit drugs.
  • More than a third of teens mistakenly believe that they drive better under the influence of marijuana.
  • Between 60 percent and 80 percent of drivers have lost their license due to an alcohol offense continue to drive.
  • 23 million Americans are addicted to alcohol or drugs.
  • Drunk driving costs every adult in America about $500 a year.
  • Alcohol isn’t the only impairment-inducing substance that people are ingesting before driving. About 16 percent of motor vehicle accidents involve legal or illegal drugs other than alcohol.
  • At all levels of blood alcohol concentration, young people are at a higher risk of being involved in a crash than older people.
  • A quarter of motorcyclists killed in crashes in 2016 had a blood alcohol level of at least the legal limit.
  • At the legal limit for alcohol impairment of .08 percent, individuals can expect to experience problems with their muscle coordination, concentration, short term memory, ability to control speed, self-control, reasoning, judgment, and ability to detect danger.
  • About one in every three people will be involved in a drunk driving crash in their lifetime.
  • A convicted drunk driver has driven drunk an average of 80 times before getting caught.

The NHTSA offers the following tips to avoid becoming a drunk driving statistic:

  • Before drinking, choose a trusted, non-drinking friend to be a designated driver.
  • Don’t let friends drive while impaired by alcohol or drugs.
  • If you are unable to find a sober friend to drive you home after drinking, call a taxi or a rideshare.
  • If you’re hosting a party where alcohol will be served, ensure that your guests have a designated driver to take them home.
  • If you see an impaired driver on the road, contact law enforcement.

Rolling Right Turn on Red

As reported in Slate, the rolling right turn on red is the cause of about 6 percent of pedestrian fatalities, with 21 percent of those deaths being children. How the rolling right turn on red occurs is that the driver slows at the red light, but doesn’t come to a full stop. Although the driver often looks, while rolling, to see if anyone is coming at the intersection, he or she travels into the intersection before fully determining that it is clear.

As reported by the Bradenton Herald, Florida law requires vehicles to come to a full stop at red lights. However, the state’s traffic camera law permits a rolling right turn on red if the driver is making the right-hand turn “in a careful and prudent manner” at an intersection where right-hand turns on red are allowed, provided the driver came to a complete stop after crossing the stop line, but before turning right.

Obstructed Driver Vision and Car Accidents

Slate notes that 12 percent of all crashes happen when a driver is unable to have a clear, unobstructed view of what is happening on the roadway. Scenarios in which a driver goes into a situation blindly include:

  • Making a left turn at an intersection without being able to see if there are vehicles coming in either direction due to a large vehicle or something else blocking the driver’s view.
  • Going through a red light, knowing that there is a risk of a vehicle coming into the intersection.
  • Racing down the road without knowing if—or when—the road is going to end.

Inadequate surveillance is the most frequent driver-attributed critical reason for intersection crashes, the NHTSA reports, accounting for 44.1 percent of crashes caused by driver error. Other common reasons include false assumption of another’s action and turning with an obstructed view.

Driver Fatigue and Driving Drowsy

As reported by the National Safety Council, driving drowsy produces the same effects as driving while impaired by alcohol. A driver who has gone more than 20 hours without sleep has equivalent effects as driving with a blood-alcohol level of .08 percent. As the driver’s reaction times, ability to sustain attention, and an awareness of hazards on the roadway all worsen with drowsiness, fatigued drivers are three times more likely to be involved in a car crash than those who are well rested. Here are some additional facts about the problem:

  • Each year, about 100,000 crashes across the nation involve drowsy driving, resulting in around 1,550 fatalities and 71,000 injuries.
  • Fatigue-related crashes that result in death or injury result in a cost to society of around $109 billion each year, not including property damage.
  • Drivers under the age of 25 make up about 50 percent of all drivers involved in crashes attributed to fatigue.
  • About half of all adult drivers admit to consistently driving drowsy, with 40 percent stating that they’ve fallen asleep behind the wheel at some point in their lives. Around 20 percent admit to having fallen asleep behind the wheel at some point in the past year.
  • While any driver can find themselves driving while fatigued, the problem plagues certain groups of people more than others. Those groups include commercial truck drivers, night shift workers or those who work long shifts, drivers who have untreated sleep disorders, and drivers who take medications that make them sleepy.

Fatigued driving comes with telltale signs, as explained by the CDC. If you find yourself exhibiting any of these signs, it is best to pull over to rest or change drivers.

  • Frequent yawning or blinking
  • Difficulty remembering the last few miles driven
  • Missing your exit
  • Drifting from your lane
  • Hitting the rumble strip on the side of the road.

Bad Weather Significantly Increases Car Accident Risk

Florida is an undeniably wet state with significant rainfall each year and a whole season where the threat of massive hurricane’s appearing occurs. Florida’s tropical climate comes with an increased risk of car accidents due to the adverse weather conditions that can arise. Rain is one of the most dangerous things that a person can be forced to deal with while driving. It obscures your vision, increases congestion in the road, and lowers the traction your vehicle’s tires have with the road.

One of the worst parts of Florida rain is how suddenly it can appear and catch drivers in the middle of their commute. Always ensure that your windshield wipers and lights are functioning correctly, drive slowly with extra time given for turns, and remember that hazard lights are not meant to be used unless you have a legitimate problem with your vehicle. People that put on their hazard lights while driving in thick rain may think it increases their visibility but it can convey the wrong information to other drivers that may think your vehicle is parked and that there is something wrong with your vehicle.

Tailgating is Dangerous Driving Behavior

Tailgating is defined as a driver following the vehicle in front of him or her too closely. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration reports that about 5 percent of all commercial motor vehicle crashes happen because the large truck is following the lead vehicle too closely. Slate states that rear-end collisions account for between 23 and 30 percent of all crashes. Tailgating deprives the driver in the following vehicle of the time needed to react to the lead vehicle’s sudden stop. Here are a few tips to avoid getting into a rear-end collision due to tailgating:

  • Always maintain a speed that will allow you to stop safely behind the car in front of you. A common rule of thumb is to place two seconds between yourself and the car in front of you. However, remember that adverse weather conditions may require more time to stop and, therefore, you should double the distance between yourself and other cars in such conditions.
  • Remember also that larger vehicles, such as tractor-trailers and buses, require even more time to come to a safe stop.
  • Special caution should be used at intersections or in work zones, as these locations both present situations in which the lead car may suddenly stop without warning.

Call Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, if an Aventura Auto Accident Injured You

These are just a few of the causes of automobile accidents that occur in Aventura and beyond. If you have been injured in an accident due to the negligence or carelessness of another driver, you may be eligible for compensation. Our experienced Aventura accident attorneys can help you to determine what your legal options are. To schedule your free consultation and case evaluation, contact us at Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, online or by calling (954) 302-7068.

Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA
20803 Biscayne Boulevard Suite 101,
Aventura, FL 33180
(954) 302-7068

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