What do you think are the top five causes of Kansas City car crashes? Drugs and alcohol? Traffic? Distracted driving? Bad weather? Bad luck?
Driver behavior is the sole factor in more than half of all accidents and a contributing factor in 90 percent of Kansas City car crashes. There are five driver behaviors that cause the majority of car accidents. These are:
• Distracted Driving
• Drunk Driving
• Aggressive Driving
• Drowsy Driving
All these behaviors are preventable which means that most accidents don’t need to happen.
According to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) statistics, speeding is a factor in almost one-third
of car crashes. There are several reasons why speeding is dangerous. Speeding decreases the time a driver has to react to potential dangers in the road and increases the time and distance needed to stop the vehicle. Speeding also increases the chances of a vehicle spinning out of control. Most of all, speeding increases the kinetic energy released in a car crash, so there is a greater risk of serious injury and death. According to statistics compiled by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), a speed increase of 20 miles per hour can cause the energy released in a car crash to double.
Driver distraction is a factor in at least one-quarter of U.S. traffic accidents, but some estimates say that driver distraction in present in up to 80 percent of American car crashes. Distracted driving is of such concern that U.S. Secretary of Transportation declared distracted driving a national epidemic.
According to the National Highway Traffic safety Administration (NHTSA), the use of a wireless devices such as cell phones while driving is the number one source of driver inattention. Recent studies show that talking on a cell phone while driving decreases a driver’s reaction time just as much as drinking would. Cell phone use also quadruples a driver’s risk of being involved in a Kansas City car crash.
But, cell phone use is just one form of driver distraction. Other common causes of driver distraction are:
• Eating or drinking
• Adjusting the radio
• Programming a GPS device
• Slowing down to look at an accident
• Children or other passengers
• Adjusting your music player
• Reading while driving
• Grooming while driving
In 2009, nearly 32 percent of all fatal crashes involved a driver who was under the influence of alcohol. Three hundred of these drunk driving deaths occurred in Missouri; 154 in Kansas. Eighteen percent of fatal crashes involve a driver using drugs and this percentage is increasing. You can learn more about Kansas City drunk driving accidents and the rights of Missouri drunk driving victims on our Kansas City Drunk Driving Accident Page.
Aggressive driver behavior includes: rude gestures, frequent lane changes, aggressive tailgating, deliberately preventing another driver from passing, flashing lights at other drivers, failure to regard right-of-way signs, and disregarding traffic signals. These behaviors may lead to serious car accidents and/or road rage incidents. Learn about aggressive driving in our library article: “Aggressive driving in Kansas City.”
According to the NHTSA, tired and drowsy drivers cause nearly 100,000 accidents every year. Our library article: “Sleep Deprived Drivers Endanger Kansas City Motorists” contains more information about the dangers of driver fatigue.
These are the top five causes of accidents in Kansas City and nationwide. What do they all have in common? With a little care, all these accidents are preventable.
Have You Been Injured In A Kansas City Area Car Accident?
If you've been injured in a car accident you need to speak with an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our Kansas City office directly at 816.471.5111 to schedule your free consultation.