Car accidents are a part of everyday life in the city. And while there are an infinite number of potential causes, some are more common than others. Knowing common causes of car accidents can help you practice defensive driving, stay safe, and understand your rights as a motorist. 

Some car accident causes point to negligence. When negligence causes an accident with injuries, the law can hold the negligent party accountable. If you believe negligence played a factor in your accident, Mandy Hancock Law can help. 

In the state of Tennessee (2020), there were:

  • 23,815 car accidents involving distracted driving 
  • 7,332 crashes involving an impaired driver
  • 12,221 crashes involving large trucks
  • 7,253 crashes involving speeding

Top Car Accident Causes

Almost all car accidents are caused by “driver error.” But under the wide umbrella of human error are several recurring factors. Usually, they involve some kind of negligence. That means a motorist failed to uphold a duty of care to operate their vehicle in a way that doesn’t pose a threat to other drivers.

Distracted Driving

Distracted driving is a broad term referring to anything that takes your attention away from driving. This can include eating, texting, applying makeup, talking on the phone, or even turning your attention to your navigation or playlist.

Distracted driving impacts thousands of people each year. According to the CDC

  • Around 3,000 people die each year in distracted driving-related crashes
  • 424,000 people were injured in distracted driving accidents in 2019
  • 1 in 5 people who died in distracted driving crashes were riding bikes, walking, or otherwise outside a vehicle
  • 39% of high school students texted or emailed while driving at least once in the past 30 days
  • Among drivers aged 15-20 involved in fatal crashes, 9% were distracted at the time of the crash

Speeding and Reckless Driving

Most people have driven over the speed limit at least once or twice. But speeding is a way of life for some. It might also be paired with other aggressive maneuvers like following too closely, running red lights, or abrupt lane changes.

Whatever the reason for their urgency, reckless driving and speeding are never worth the potential cost. According to the United States Department of Transportation:  

  • Speeding killed 12,330 people in 2021
  • Speeding was a contributing factor in 29% of all traffic fatalities
  • Speeding is responsible for killing an average of 33 people a day
  • 2021 is the third consecutive year with an increase in speeding-related fatalities
  • Speeding was a factor in 38% of fatal crashes on roads with moving or standing water

Sleep-Deprived Driving

These days, it seems like more and more Americans are struggling with sleep deprivation. Work schedules are hectic, sleep patterns are poor, and there doesn’t seem to be enough coffee in the world to correct the imbalance. 

Fatigue is also a major concern for long-haul truckers. Their grueling work schedules and long hours behind the wheel can be a recipe for disaster. If a trucker nods off even for a second, their unmanned big rig can cause catastrophic damage to property and lives. Drowsy driving statistics are hard to nail down because drowsiness can’t be proven like intoxication. But an estimated 684 people die each year in drowsy driving accidents.

Impaired Driving

In Knoxville, impaired driving is one of the leading causes of car accidents that result in injury or fatality. Impaired driving, also known as “driving under the influence,” is defined as “Being in control of a vehicle while impaired by alcohol or drugs to a level that renders the driver incapable of operating their motor vehicle safely.” 

According to the Tennessee Department of Safety & Homeland security, (2020):

  • 10% of fatal crashes involved both alcohol and drugs
  • Impaired driving crashes are over 14 times more likely to cause fatality
  • Impaired drivers are 4 times more likely to speed
  • The majority of impaired drivers involved in a crash were between the ages of 25 and 29 

Reckless Driving at Intersections

Approximately 40% of auto accidents occur at intersections, with factors like running stop signs and red lights. Defensive driving is always critical, but never more so than when approaching an intersection. 

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration:

  • Of all crashes involving drivers aged 20 and younger, 33% were at intersections
  • 29.2% of intersection crashes involved decision errors, including driving too fast, aggressive driving, illegal maneuvering, etc.
  • The number one cause of driver-attributed intersection crashes was “turning with an obstructed view”
  • The second most common cause was some kind of internal distraction inside the car

How Can a Car Accident Lawyer Help?

If you were in a car accident, Mandy Hancock Law can help. We are committed to giving your auto accident case the time and attention it needs to ensure the best possible outcome. From your free consultation to your settlement and everything in between, we’ll be there. 

Mandy Hancock Law helps with the following:

  • Collecting eyewitness statements
  • Understanding all the details of your crash
  • Getting your Knoxville crash report
  • Gathering pictures of the crash
  • Notifying the defendant’s insurance company of your legal representation
  • Organizing past and present medical records
  • Sending a demand letter to the insurance company
  • Negotiating with the insurance company for your compensation

At Mandy Hancock Law, we know how overwhelming a car crash is for the victim. Our personal injury lawyers are here to discuss your case so you can understand your rights and determine whether you have a case. Let us handle the legal aspect of your crash so you can focus on restoring your quality of life. Call today for a free case review if you’ve been in a car accident!