Our Springfield, Missouri car accident attorneys believe that the vast majority of crashes are preventable: they don't have to happen. To help avoid car accidents, we've put together this list of 15 common causes: sometimes we all need a gentle reminder to help us drive more safely.
1. Distracted Driving. We never cease to be amazed at the number of accidents that happen simply because drivers aren't paying attention to the road. These accidents are among the easiest to prevent: jus put away your cell phone, your make up kit, and your lunch. Don't fiddle with the radio, or turn around to talk to backseat passengers. When you drive, just drive.
2. Speeding. When an accident involves a speeding driver, the impact of the collision is increased - and it follows that resulting damages and injuries will be considerably more severe.
3. Drunk Driving. It's old news that drinking and driving is dangerous, and yet Missourians are charged with DWI every day. So, we'll say it again: never drink and drive. Never. (No drugs either.)
4. Reckless Driving. Don't speed, tailgate, or change lanes too quickly. There are a number of driver excuses for this behavior ("I was running late"; or "She was going 25 in a 45"; or "There was only a small gap and I had to change lanes"): none of them are worth having an accident over.
5. Rain, Snow & Ice. If roads are hazardous, slow down. You will need extra time to stop, and to turn safely, and to change lane, and, frankly, to perform nearly all driving maneuvers. If you can't see - or if you don't feel safe - find a good place to pull over.
6. Running Red Lights & Stop Signs. If the light is yellow and you haven't reached the "point of no return," stop. (Even if you have the green light, it never hurts to keep your eyes open.)
7. Teenage Drivers. Teens are inexperienced, easily distracted, and, often, careless. Share this list with your teenage drivers.
8. Night Driving. Slow down at night. Don't overdrive your headlights.
9. Design Defects. Be sure you keep track of safety recall information for your family's vehicles. You can use www.recalls.gov as a resource.
10. Unsafe Lane Changes. Take your time and wait until you have sufficient space. Plan ahead, but if you miss a turn or exit, continue forth and turn around in a safe place.
11. Wrong Way Driving. If you turn onto an exit or a road and find that you are going in the wrong direction, pull over immediately. Stay calm, and turn around safely.
12. Road Rage. Don't respond to aggressive drivers. In the heat of the moment, it's easy to make rash decisions that you'll likely regret later. Take a deep breath and move on with your day.
13. Tailgating. Rear end accidents are the most common kind of collision, and these accidents are normally occasioned by drivers who follow too closely. Remember, you need to allow yourself enough space to stop suddenly, if needed.
14. Falling Asleep at the Wheel. Don't risk driving if you're feeling drowsy: there's always a better option. You can fall asleep without realizing it.
15. Animals Crossing Road. Be aware of your surroundings and use your peripheral vision.
Of course, there are times when there is no action you can take to avoid a collision. However, driving defensively will significantly reduce your chances: in many cases, responsible drivers can stop an accident before it has a chance to happen.
We represent accident victims throughout Missouri, including those from Springfield, Nixa, Ozark, Branson, Marshfield, Monett, Bolivar, Republic, Willard, and Rogersville. If you or a loved one has been injured in a Missouri car accident, call 1-888-777-AUTO to schedule a free initial consultation with one of our personal injury attorneys.Attorney meetings by appointment only