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The Top Causes of Car Accidents and How To Avoid Them

Unfortunately, accidents are a common occurrence on the roads, but many of them can be prevented by being aware of the top causes. In this blog post, we will discuss some of the most common reasons for car accidents and provide tips on how you can avoid them. By being informed and taking precautions, you can help keep yourself and others safe while driving.

Distracted Driving

Distracted driving extends beyond just texting or making calls. It can be categorized into three main types: visual, manual, and cognitive distractions. Visual distractions take your eyes off the road, like looking at a GPS device. Manual distractions involve taking your hands off the steering wheel, perhaps to change the radio station or grab something from the passenger seat. Cognitive distractions take your mind off driving, such as being engrossed in a deep conversation or lost in thought. Each of these distractions can significantly increase the likelihood of a car accident by impairing your ability to react to sudden changes on the road, recognize potential hazards, and make safe driving decisions. By understanding and avoiding these distractions, drivers can greatly reduce their risk of being involved in an accident.


Speeding stands out as one of the top causes of car accidents. It’s not just about breaking the law; driving too fast can drastically reduce your ability to control the vehicle, especially in unexpected situations. When you speed, you have less time to react if someone brakes suddenly, an animal crosses the road, or the road conditions are poor due to weather. Plus, the faster you’re going, the more severe a crash can be due to the higher impact force involved. Sticking to the speed limit isn’t just about obeying rules—it’s about making the road safer for everyone, including yourself. Remember, arriving a few minutes late is far better than not arriving at all.

Impaired Driving

Impaired driving doesn’t just involve alcohol; it includes driving under the influence of illicit drugs, prescription medications, and even over-the-counter drugs that can affect your ability to drive. Each of these substances can impair judgment, reaction times, coordination, and concentration, making it much more difficult to operate a vehicle safely. Despite the clear dangers, some drivers still choose to get behind the wheel while not in the right state to do so, significantly increasing the risk of causing an accident. This reckless behavior affects not only the driver but also passengers, other road users, and pedestrians. Awareness and adherence to the law can dramatically reduce the incidence of these preventable accidents, making the roads safer for everyone.

Running Red Lights

Running red lights is not just a minor traffic violation; it’s a significant risk factor for accidents on the road. This action forces drivers to make dangerous, split-second decisions, often leading to collisions with vehicles that have the right of way. When a driver chooses to ignore a red light, they not only put themselves in danger but also risk the safety of passengers, pedestrians, and other motorists. The decision to run a red light can lead to side-impact collisions or “T-bone” accidents, which are often severe and can result in serious injuries or fatalities. Being patient and respecting traffic signals are simple yet effective ways to prevent these incidents and ensure a safer driving environment for everyone.


Tailgating, or following another car too closely, is a common yet risky driving behavior that frequently leads to accidents. It happens because the tailgater doesn’t leave enough space to stop safely without colliding with the vehicle in front if it suddenly breaks or slows down. This lack of sufficient stopping distance is particularly dangerous at high speeds or in poor driving conditions, such as wet or icy roads, where the required stopping distance increases. Accidents caused by tailgating can lead to a chain reaction of collisions in busy traffic, not just involving the tailgater and the vehicle directly in front but potentially multiple vehicles. By maintaining a safe following distance, drivers can significantly reduce the risk of these preventable accidents, making the roads safer for everyone.

By understanding these top causes of car accidents and taking proactive steps to avoid them, you can help reduce your risk of being involved in a collision while driving. Remember always to stay focused on the road, follow traffic laws, and drive defensively to keep yourself and others safe on the roadways. If you find yourself in a car accident, it is highly recommended to reach out to a trusted legal agency like Ridder Law. Safe driving practices benefit everyone on the road and contribute to creating a safer environment for all drivers.

This article is from Brooke Chaplan, a freelance writer and blogger who lives and works in Los Lunas, New Mexico. She loves the outdoors and spends her free time hiking, biking, and gardening. For more information, contact Brooke via Twitter @BrookeChaplan.

Bob Kraft

I am a Dallas, Texas lawyer who has had the privilege of helping thousands of clients since 1971 in the areas of Personal Injury law and Social Security Disability.

About This Blog

The title of this blog reflects my attitude toward those government agencies and insurance companies that routinely mistreat injured or disabled people. As a Dallas, Texas lawyer, I've spent more than 45 years trying to help those poor folk, and I have been frustrated daily by the actions of the people on the other side of their claims. (Sorry if I offended you...)

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