Every day in the United States there are about 135,000,000 cars on the road and every fourteen seconds a car accident that results in an injury occurs. You would think that with these kinds of statistics that we would know everything there is to know about car accidents. Nevertheless, researchers continue to study the various causes of car accidents and some of the statistics may surprise you.
Despite the safety benefits that seatbelts have been proven to provide, people are still not wearing them. Around sixty percent of those who have died in car accidents were not wearing their seatbelt. Seatbelts have been shown to reduce the risk of death in car accidents by about fifty percent. Wearing a seatbelt in a car may be one of the easiest ways to protect yourself however many people still neglect this safety feature. The most common culprits of not wearing a seatbelt are young adults, men, and backseat passengers.
2) Distracted Driving
Reducing the number of distracted drivers on the road has been an important goal for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Many states have banned cell phone use while driving and ad campaigns with slogans like “is it worth it?” and “stop the texts, stop the wrecks” have become increasingly popular. Despite these efforts, distracted driving is actually on the rise. At any given moment in the United States over half a million drivers are using cell phones while driving. Studies show that talking on a cell phone while driving gives you the reaction time of a 70-year-old person and increases your chances of being in accident by four hundred percent. The average text message takes about five seconds to write and send. Although it may not seem like a long time, if you are traveling at fifty-five miles per hour, you will travel the length of a football field without looking in these few seconds. Distracted driving is a factor in twenty five percent of all car accidents and unfortunately this number is growing.
3) Teen Drivers
Teenage drivers are at a much higher risk of getting into an accident than any other drivers on the road. Whether it is inexperience, false confidence, or the higher probability of distracted driving, teenagers are responsible for twenty percent of all accidents. A teenager is ten times more likely to be in a crash their first year of driving and on average, five thousand teenagers a year lose their lives in car accidents.
Motorcycle deaths on the rise in America and in the state of Florida, motorcyclists account for twenty percent of all fatal car accidents. Only nineteen states in the US require motorcyclists to wear helmets and Florida is not one of them. When compared with states that do require helmets the percentage of fatality victims being motorcyclists decreases drastically. To encourage helmets in no helmet states, some insurance policies offer incentives for wearing a helmet.
5) Road Rage
Believe it or not, road rage is one of the leading causes of all accidents and that number is increasing rapidly at about seven percent per year. It is estimated that the average driver will curse over 32,000 times in their life while driving a vehicle. This anger and frustration lead to aggressive driving which in turn results in accidents. One aspect that makes road rage particularly dangerous is that the victim will often become the aggressor. After being cut off in traffic, a victim will try to get revenge by tailgating or out maneuvering the other driver which further perpetuates the road rage and heightens the severity of the situation.
Car accidents are a common and costly part of life for Americans, as a car accident lawyer Lake Worth, FL trusts knows well. It is estimated that the economic loss associated with car accidents in the United States is almost 900 billion. The more researchers can study how accidents occur, the better we can be at preventing them.
Thank you to our friends and contributors at The Law Office of Eric H. Luckman, P.A. for their insight into car accidents and injuries.