Car accidents are a serious problem in the United States, and they can have devastating effects on those involved. While many factors can contribute to car accidents, some of the most common causes include distracted driving, impaired driving, speeding, improper lane changing, and other dangerous behaviors. If you or a loved one were seriously injured in an accident, you should seek help from an experienced car accident lawyer.
Distracted driving is when you take your attention away from the road while driving. This could include any activity that takes your hands, eyes, or mind off of operating a vehicle safely. The popularity of cellphones has led to an explosion in distracted driving accidents over the last few years. Examples of distracted driving can range from texting while driving to eating behind the wheel. Regardless of what it looks like, distracted driving can be incredibly dangerous and potentially life-threatening.
What Are The Dangers Of Distracted Driving?
When it comes to distracted driving, there are serious risks involved, especially for pedestrians. If you aren’t paying attention to the road ahead of you, you’re more likely to miss important details such as stop signs or a person in a crosswalk. Furthermore, if your hands are not on the wheel and your eyes aren’t on the road, you are unable to react quickly enough in an emergency situation.
Distracted drivers are also more likely to speed or make mistakes such as running red lights or illegal turns. These mistakes can cause devastating accidents that put innocent people at risk. Even worse is that distracted drivers tend to be less aware of their surroundings than those who are paying attention. This means distracted drivers may not even realize they have caused an accident until it has already occurred.
What Are The Consequences Of Distracted Driving?
Distracted driving increases the chances of a car accident occurring and puts everyone in danger. Unfortunately, these consequences can be far-reaching and potentially devastating for victims involved in a crash due to driver negligence. Victims can suffer injuries such as broken bones, traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), spinal cord injuries and whiplash. Many also experience emotional trauma, including depression or anxiety. And treating major injuries means financial losses due to medical bills and lost wages. No one should ever have to face these disastrous consequences stemming from someone else’s distracted driving.
Impaired driving is one of the leading causes of accident injuries and deaths in the U.S. According to the CDC, 32 people a day are killed in drunk driving incidents every day. That’s one person every 45 minutes. Between 2011-2020, on average, approximately 10,500 were killed in drunk driving crashes. When you add up the grim yearly statistics, that’s over 100,000 lives lost because of drunk driving alone over that time span.
California defines impaired driving as driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. For alcohol, it is having a blood alcohol level (BAC) of 0.08 and over. If the driver is under the legal drinking age, 21, or on probation, it is having a BAC of 0.01. It is 0.04 if someone has a commercial license or is a rideshare driver. In short, anyone above the BACs listed for their category is driving illegally.
Police don’t have the same precise testing method for drugged driving, which can make it harder to detect, unless it’s obvious the driver is impaired. Also, not all drugs are banned. However, driving while on certain prescription drugs, such as sleeping pills is illegal. And even though California has legalized marijuana, it is illegal to drive while under its influence.
Some of the most tragic accidents involve drunk driving. Often, innocent lives are lost. Plus, not only are other drivers in danger, pedestrians, bicyclists and motorcycle riders are too.
Dangers of Impaired Driving
When a driver’s ability is compromised for any reason, they are less likely to react quickly and make safe decisions in an emergency. Also, if the driver has been drinking alcohol or taking drugs, their reaction time and decision-making skills may be even further degraded. This greatly increases the risk of an accident and potentially causing serious injury or even death.
Consequences of Impaired Driving
Accidents caused by impaired driving can be severe and long-lasting. The offending driver will justifiably face criminal charges, depending on the severity of the incident. For the victim, the financial consequences can be devastating. Besides mounting medical bills, they will have to deal with lost wages due to time away from work while recovering from their car accident. Additionally, there will inevitably be emotional trauma involved that could last long after physical wounds heal.
Speeding is defined as any time a driver exceeds the posted speed limit on a road or highway. This can range from going just slightly over to driving significantly faster than the limit. The posted speed limits are there for a reason – they are designed to ensure safety on the roadways by providing drivers with an accepted standard of driving speed.
Examples and Dangers of Speeding
There are many examples of speeding, such as when a driver zooms by other vehicles on a freeway even when those cars are traveling at 65-75 mph. However, there are also more subtle examples that may not be as easily recognized, such as when someone drives too fast for conditions, like when roads are wet.
Regardless of how one chooses to define it, speeding has serious implications for those who choose to ignore the rules and drive too fast. It’s been estimated that nearly 30% of all car accident fatalities in the US involve excessive speed.
Consequences for Speeding
If you are caught speeding by a police officer, you can expect to receive a ticket which may include fines and points on your license. Young drivers are subject to graduated license laws in California. If they are caught speeding, they are subject to additional restrictions which can also include a license suspension if they accumulate too many points in a given period.
Any driver going well over the speed limit could face criminal charges such as reckless driving or vehicular manslaughter in extreme cases where someone is killed due to excessive speed.
Speeding is just not worth it. The risks far outweigh any benefits one might think they’ll get from going too fast on roads or highways. Not only does it put the driver in danger, but it also puts other innocent people at risk as well. So please keep in mind that whenever you get behind the wheel, you need to slow down and obey all traffic laws. Doing so could save your life and the lives of those around you.
Improper Lane Changing
Improper lane changing is when a driver does not check their blind spots or signal before moving into another lane on the road. It can also refer to drivers who fail to stay within their own lanes. This type of driving behavior can create dangerous situations and lead to serious accidents.
Drivers who improperly switch lanes are particularly dangerous to motorcycle riders. Note that lane-splitting on freeways is legal for motorcycle riders in California. A driver who changes lanes without looking can easily hit a motorcycle rider who is lane-splitting, with disastrous results.
Consequences of Improper Lane Changing
The consequences of improper lane changing can be severe depending on the situation. Additionally, those who are found guilty may face fines or jail time if their actions were considered reckless enough by law enforcement officers or courts.
Car accident victims should be aware that if they have been injured due to another motorist’s negligence then they may have legal rights to pursue financial compensation for their losses from the responsible party through the aid of a car accident lawyer. Furthermore, drivers must always take extra care when merging between lanes by checking their blind spots and using turn signals so as not to put others at risk due to careless behavior behind the wheel.
Other Causes of Car Accidents
While distracted driving, impaired driving, speeding, and improper lane changes are all well-known causes of car accidents, there are other causes that you may not have considered.
Inclement weather can be a major factor in car accidents. Rain, snow, sleet, hail, and icy conditions can reduce visibility and make it more difficult to maneuver your vehicle safely. Even if you are an experienced driver who knows how to handle inclement weather conditions properly, other drivers on the road may not be as prepared or attentive. Therefore, it is important to stay alert during bad weather conditions and drive cautiously to avoid any potential crashes.
In some cases, mechanical failures may lead to a crash. This could be anything from a faulty brake system to problems with the steering wheel or tires. All drivers need to maintain their vehicles in good working order so that they do not experience any mechanical failures while driving that could lead to an accident. If you suspect an issue with your vehicle’s brakes or another component, take it to a mechanic as soon as possible, so they can inspect it before taking it out on the road again.
Dangerous road conditions such as potholes or debris in the roadway can cause drivers to lose control of their vehicles and crash into another vehicle. It is vital for drivers to remain aware of their surroundings even when no other cars are present, so they can spot potential hazards on the roadway before coming too close to them and causing an accident. Additionally, local municipal governments should ensure that public roads are cleared of hazardous materials regularly for safety reasons.
What to Do if You are Seriously Injured in a Car Accident
The Dominguez Firm understands that being seriously hurt in a car accident is an incredibly stressful and difficult experience. We are here to help you seek the justice and financial compensation you deserve for your losses as a result of someone else’s negligence. Whether it was due to distracted driving, impaired driving, speeding, improper lane changing or any other factor, our team is dedicated to helping victims recover from their injuries while holding those responsible accountable for their actions.
If you have been injured in a car accident caused by another driver’s actions then please call us at (800) 818-1818 for a free consultation right away.
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