As safe as California drivers try to be, auto accidents still happen. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), an estimated 1,894,000 motor vehicle accident injuries occur each year. Auto accident victims often face costly medical bills, lost wages, and other unanticipated expenses associated with their injuries. Let’s take a look at three common reasons why auto accidents occur in Riverside County to help you feel more prepared as you travel along California roadways.
1. Distracted Driving
Safe driving practices require drivers to keep their eyes on the road at all times. However, most of us are tempted to look elsewhere at some point, even for a few seconds. Reading a text, turning our head around to chat with someone in the backseat, reaching for a snack, or other distracting behaviors can jeopardize our safety and that of others on the road. Although most of us think that we are great at multitasking, humans actually have a hard time focusing on more than one task at a time. Even unconsciously giving in to distractions, like daydreaming or reflexively reaching for the phone, can lead to severe consequences.
2. Driving While Impaired
By now, we recognize that drivers who operate their vehicles while under the influence of drugs or alcohol are less able to drive safely. Each year, between 25 and 33 percent of fatal collisions involve intoxicated drivers. People who drive while fatigued or exhausted can be considered impaired drivers as well. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that drowsy driving is similar to drunk driving, as “being awake for at least 18 hours is the same as someone having a blood content (BAC) of 0.05 percent).” Make sure you avoid driving while impaired, as accidents involving drugs, alcohol, or fatigue can involve serious—and often fatal—injuries.
3. Speeding and Reckless Driving Behaviors
Speed limits are posted for a reason. When drivers exceed the speed limit, they put themselves and others at risk for injury. Drivers traveling too fast have less time to react to a hazard up ahead, and speeding vehicles have trouble navigating roadways affected by weather conditions like rain and ice. Unfortunately, speeding is a common habit; the NHTSA estimates that approximately 66 percent of drivers regularly exceed posted speed limits. Do your part to keep California roadways safe by observing and adhering to posted speed limits.
Talk to a dedicated Temecula and Murrieta auto accident attorney today by calling Hales & Associates, A Professional Law Corporation at (951) 489-3320.