Many people in Illinois get in their cars every day and drive to work, school or to run errands. However, driving is perhaps one of the most dangerous things you can do. In 2016 there were 324,473 motor vehicle crashes in Illinois, including 1,000 fatal accidents.
This data can be scary, but fortunately, most drivers are safe and responsible. However, it is important to be aware of some common causes of car accidents so you can make an effort to avoid them. Here are the four biggest causes of crashes on the road and how you can help prevent them.
A major cause of car accidents is distracted driving. It can be incredibly tempting to try and multitask while driving. In today’s day and age with modern technology, there are many distractions available to you. Texting, talking or otherwise being on your cell phone is a huge distraction that can lead to serious car accidents.
The simplest way to avoid this risk is to put your phone down while driving. You may even want to put your cell phone on silent or do-not-disturb mode so you are not tempted by incoming notifications or sounds.
Distracted driving laws in Illinois can be harsh, too. If you do not cause an accident by driving distractedly, you may face other severe legal consequences.
Driving while under the influence of alcohol is another major cause of car accidents. Drunk driving is one of the most dangerous types of driving and it can cause fatal accidents. Drinking causes slower reaction times and other impairments, which can significantly affect your driving.
The best way to prevent this is to not get behind the wheel after consuming any amount of alcohol. Call a driving service or designate a sober driver at the beginning of the night to avoid drunk driving and potentially fatal accidents.
Bad weather or night driving
Poor weather conditions, including driving at night can also cause accidents. Driving in heavy rain or snow, with poor lighting can be confusing and difficult to navigate. Rain, snow and ice can make the roads difficult to drive on causing hydroplaning and sliding which can lead to accidents.
If you are driving in severe weather or at night, take extra caution, be vigilant and be patient. You do not want to rush anything because this could lead to an accident.
Traffic violations and recklessness
Speeding and making illegal turns also cause a number of accidents every day in Illinois. These actions can be classified as reckless driving, which is particularly dangerous. While it is easy to accidentally commit a traffic violation such as speeding or running a stop sign, these can cause serious accidents.
Take care to obey all traffic laws when driving and exercise an appropriate amount of caution when driving. You may be tempted to break what you think is a small traffic law, here or there, but this could lead to a significant crash.
Driving is a part of many people’s daily routines so it is important to be extra safe while on the roads. Serious crashes happen all the time, but there are ways you can avoid them on your daily commute. Just being aware of some of the common causes of accidents can help you prevent them.