Statistics show that the number of car accidents continues to rise each year. The Arizona Department of Transportation reports that in 2016 alone, there were a total of 126,987 car accidents in the state. This number represents an 8% increase from 2015. Among these accidents, 952 persons were killed and 56,753 were injured. The number of fatalities increased 7% over the prior year.
The top causes of the 2016 reported accidents include the following:
- Failure to Obey Signs and Signals;
- Distracted Driving;
- Unsafe Passing; and
- Driving Under the Influence.
While some car accidents can be classified as unavoidable, most collisions can be avoided if drivers pay attention, focus on their surroundings, and stay off the roads if impaired in any way.
Below is a list of tips to consider to keep yourself, and the drivers around you, safe while traveling.
Speeding continues to be the most common driver violation, both in Arizona and nationwide. In 2016, speeding was the number one cause of accidents in Arizona, and this is certainly a preventable cause. No matter how late you are running, resist the urge to speed. Arriving five minutes earlier is not worth the risk of your life or the life of another.
Failure to Obey Signs and Signals
Whether it is running a red light or failure to yield right-of-way, it is important to obey all traffic signs and signals. Accidents will occur if the fundamental driving terms that we all learn to abide by are disobeyed.
Texting while driving is one of the most serious forms of distracted driving. Many jurisdictions in the United States have passed legislation making texting and driving illegal. However, it is difficult to monitor. The only true solution is to simply stop texting while driving. If it is a pressing matter, safely pull off to the side of the road or wait until you arrive at your intended destination.
Other types of distracted driving include eating, grooming, reading, adjusting radios, or any other activity that takes your eyes off the road for any length of time. When you are distracted, you are more likely to drift into another lane or fail to notice a stopped vehicle in front of you. It is important to avoid any task that prevents you from concentrating on the road.
Aggressive driving, including unsafe passing, occurs when a driver commits a traffic offense, or a combination of numerous traffic offenses, to endanger other persons or property. It is important to remain calm and stay focused at all times while operating a vehicle.
Driving While Impaired
Whether you are impaired by alcohol, a prescribed medication, illicit drugs or lack of sleep, it is essential that you stay off the roadways. A large number of accidents in Arizona, and across the country, are caused by impaired driving. These accidents are easily avoidable by self-awareness of the impairment. Driving responsibly would prevent many accidents.
The above-listed causes fall across the board nationally, as top causes of car accidents. Of course, there are other causes that should be discussed, as the top causes will fluctuate from year to year, on both a state and national level.
Limited visibility and wet roads are serious dangers when driving. If the weather is inclement, it is important to pay attention and have full visibility of all surroundings when driving. While it may be inconvenient, it may be best to pull over until the rain, wind, or dust passes.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, approximately 100,000 car accidents are caused by drowsy drivers each year. Some signs of driver fatigue include: excessive yawning, feeling fidgety, drifting in and out of lanes, and misjudging traffic situations. If you experience any of these symptoms, you should pull over to a safe location.
There are times when accidents are caused by defective or malfunctioning vehicles. It is important that drivers ensure that routine maintenance is performed on vehicles, including checks on tires, engines, etc.
In addition to driving in a safe, observant, and responsible manner, it is also important that both drivers and passengers buckle up. Of the 952 killed in 2016, 250 were not wearing seatbelts.
Contact Yearin Law Office Today
If you or a loved one have been injured in a car accident in Arizona, no matter the cause, you may have a right to compensation. Contact the Yearin Law Office to talk to an experienced personal injury attorney. Call (480) 502-0708 today for a free consultation!