The bottom line is that motor vehicle accidents are more likely to occur when drivers are engaged in one or more of these situations.
Car accidents are, unfortunately, common in the state of Louisiana and all over the United States. A motor vehicle accident can involve one vehicle (single-vehicle crashes), two or more vehicles, a vehicle and a motorcyclist/bicyclist, or a vehicle and a pedestrian. No matter what the specifics of a motor vehicle accident look like, each type can be caused by one or more factors. Here are the five most common causes of motor vehicle accidents in Louisiana.
#1: Distracted Driving
This is probably the number one cause of car accidents all over the United States, with texting being the main cause of distracted driving. Our smartphones are amazing devices that allow us to remain in constant communication and connectivity with others, but this can also cause problems, particularly with trying to communicate with others while driving. The good news is that most cars have a connectivity feature that allows you to use your voice to send messages and the car can even read your messages to you. This allows you to keep your focus on the road instead of trying to look at your phone while driving.
#2: Driving Under the Influence
Driving under the influence refers not only to drunk driving but also refers to driving under the influence of anything that alters your mood or keeps you from being alert while driving. This includes driving after taking prescription, nonprescription, and even illegal drugs— anything that induces drowsiness or alters your mood.
Drunk driving, specifically, is a huge problem in Louisiana, as well as in other U.S. states. The only way to stop drunk and impaired driving is for drivers to make better decisions. Fortunately, there are rideshare services available so that people won’t have to drive themselves when intoxicated.
#3: Inclement Weather
Louisiana is known for all types of inclement weather (minus snow storms), and inclement weather of all types is a common cause of car accidents all over the U.S. Louisiana, specifically, is known for hurricanes, heavy rain, flooding, and dense fog— all of which meteorologists advise against driving in.
Most people don’t drive through hurricanes, but many still drive on flooded roads, in heavy rain, and dense fog. All of these are dangerous conditions to drive in, yet some people drive in them anyway— specifically on flooded roads. Heavy rain and dense fog can be safely navigated when using extreme caution, but it’s never a good idea to drive on a flooded road.
Flooding in Florida from Hurricane Ian. Public domain image by U.S. Customs and Border Protection, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons. CC0#4: Reckless Driving
Reckless driving refers to driving with willful disregard for one or more traffic rules, whether knowingly or unknowingly. Distracted driving, driving under the influence, and speeding can all be considered reckless driving, but reckless driving can also take other forms such as:
Closely following behind another car (tailgating)
Driving without headlights at night or in heavy rain/fog
Improper passing of another vehicle
Disobeying traffic signals (traffic lights and signs) may also l be considered reckless driving. This and all of the poor driving habits listed above are very likely to cause both major and minor accidents. If you’re injured or just simply involved in a car accident due to a reckless driver, contact a car accident lawyer in Louisiana.
As mentioned above, speeding is a form of reckless driving, but because it’s one of the most common causes of car accidents in Louisiana, it gets its own section. Drivers speed for a variety of reasons, with being in a hurry being the most common reason. Another reason is simply that they didn’t take note of the posted speed limit. Speeding can also happen when driving under the influence or while driving distracted.
Speeding itself is very dangerous because more serious injuries and death can happen when high speeds are involved in car accidents. Of course, accidents can happen when people are driving at or below the speed limit, but they’re usually not as serious as those that occur at high speeds.
The bottom line is that motor vehicle accidents are more likely to occur when drivers are engaged in one or more of the situations listed above. Paying attention to the road, abstaining from attention-impairing substances, following all traffic laws, and using extreme caution in certain weather situations all make it much less likely that you’ll be the cause of a traffic accident. When all drivers on the road do this, the risk of any type of motor vehicle accident happening is sharply decreased.
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