Road crashes are unfortunate events that lead to many undesirable consequences. People who get involved in road accidents suffer from physical, emotional, and financial damage. According to the World Health Organization, almost 1.25 million people lose their lives to vehicle collisions on the road, and 20 to 50 million suffer from different injuries. In reality, road crashes are a result of many factors, and in this article, we will provide you with the leading reasons that lead to major road crashes to be aware of.
1. Distracted Driving
The second you get behind the wheel and start driving, your safety and the safety of others on the road become your responsibility. Driving requires your full attention. If you get distracted for more than two seconds while driving, you are risking getting involved in a road crash. According to research, 9% of fatal road crashes were due to distracted driving. You might think that it is ok to check your phone or eat while you are driving or take your focus away from the road for a couple of seconds, but as a matter of fact, it is not, and the consequences can be catastrophic.
2. Aggressive Driving
Aggressive driving is any behind-the-wheel behavior that puts another person and/or property in danger without regard to safety. Speeding, cutting off traffic, tail tagging, flashing headlights, weaving in and out of traffic, and yelling are some examples of aggressive driving. Over 50% of fatal road crashes were due to aggressive driving. If you are faced with a stressful driving environment, take a deep breath and try to stay calm. If you are too angry or frustrated for whatever reason, you need to calm yourself down before you start driving.
Fatigue has a negative impact on your reaction time. As mentioned above, driving requires full attention and vigilance. However, when you are too tired because you are sick or didn’t sleep well, you shouldn’t get behind the wheel. More than 20% of road accidents were directly linked to fatigue. Driving while you are sleepy or exhausted might lead to serious road crashes. Therefore, it is very important that you refrain from driving if you didn’t get enough sleep, drowsy, or tired.
4. Intoxicated Drivers
Driving while intoxicated is a crime. Safe driving requires sound judgment and quick reactions to the surroundings, and it goes without saying that drugs and alcohol affect your judgment and reduce your reaction time. Consuming even a small amount of alcohol could result in a severe road accident. Many drivers don’t show signs of intoxication; however, that doesn’t mean that they are able to drive safely. Although people have different levels of tolerance with the mentioned substances, many motorists involved in a motorcycle accident were intoxicated drivers. Actually, intoxicated drivers are the main cause of most motorcycle accidents.
5. Bad Weather
Rain and snow create slippery surfaces, thus increasing the risk of road crashes. Wet roads are behind 73% of weather-related accidents. Therefore, you need to be very careful when driving during or after rain or snow. Avoid speeding on slippery roads to avoid hydroplaning and spinning out of control. Fog is one of the factors that contribute to road crashes as it makes it extremely difficult to see ahead of you. However, you can turn on your headlights or fog light if you have, and drive slowly to avoid bumping into other cars.
6. Animal Crossing
Many road crashes were due to animals suddenly crossing the road. Therefore, when you see an animal crossing sign, be extra careful and turn on the headlights to warn the animals. Animal crossing road accidents can be extremely stressful because other than damaging your car, you might be the reason for the suffering or death of an animal.
7. Night Driving
Night driving doubles the risks of road crashes. Although there is less traffic at night, fatal road accidents increase by 40%. Therefore, you need to be extra careful when you are driving at night. Moreover, the most dangerous time for driving is during dusk and dawn because the sky is still lit, but the roads get darker.
Although some road crashes can’t be avoided no matter how skillful and careful driver you are, many accidents can be avoided by simply sticking to the rules, staying fully alert and focused while driving, being fully sober, avoiding driving in bad weather, being extra careful when you see an animal crossing sign or while driving at night. Moreover, getting enough sleep and driving only when you are in a good mental and physical condition can reduce the risk of getting involved in a road crash. When you drive a car, your safety, the safety of your passengers and others on the road is your responsibility. Road crashes can result in a considerable amount of loss to you and your family members. Drive safe.