Car accidents occur for a million different reasons – and they happen every single day.
In Wisconsin, there are an average of 136,000 car accidents every year. The causes of car accidents are not always clear, but some are more common than others. As a car accident injury firm in Wisconsin, we deal with many, many injury cases following collisions on the roadways – and no two cases are ever the same.
Crashes due to driver error happen in the blink of an eye and are sometimes unavoidable. In this article, we want to discuss the seven most common car accident cases we deal with – and how to minimize your chances of being involved in one. Let’s dive into it.
We live in a time with endless distractions – and distracted driving is the leading cause of car accidents.
Distracted drivers are commonly using their cell phones behind the wheel – which includes calling, texting, navigation, and so on. Other distractions include eating or drinking, talking to passengers, adjusting the radio, or even just daydreaming.
Even a split second of taking your eyes off the road compromises awareness of the vehicle’s surroundings and can delay reaction times – creating a sizable risk of collisions. The effects of distractions are magnified during adverse weather conditions or traffic congestion.
Avoiding the risks of distracted driving is relatively easy:
Failing to be attentive on the road can lead to serious consequences – especially if someone else gets injured.
On average, speeding accounts for almost 20,000 Wisconsin car accidents every year.
Speeding/reckless driving is inconsiderate of others on the road and is extremely dangerous. Traveling at an unnecessarily high rate of speed reduces the driver’s ability to properly maneuver the vehicle around curves or other objects in the road.
Higher speeds almost always equate to more severe injuries in a car accident – owing to the increased force of impact. In addition to speeding, reckless behaviors caused by road rage include (but are not limited to) aggressive overtaking, tailgating, unsafe lane changes, and failing to signal. These issues leave you and other drivers with less time to react, which creates a high risk of motor vehicle accidents.
Not speeding/avoiding reckless driving is easy:
When reckless drivers cause an accident, the injured party may pursue punitive damages due to your behavior. It’s in everyone’s best interests to keep a cool head on the road.
Drunk driving accidents account for nearly 6,000 collisions on Wisconsin roadways every year – and around 160 fatal car accidents. The effects of alcohol impact the nervous system, which leads to slowed reaction times, blurred/double vision, dizziness, and more.
Additionally, alcohol impairs judgment in estimating risks, concentration, coordination, and visual abilities, all of which significantly increase the risk of crashes. Accidents caused by impaired driving can be very severe – which is why every state has extremely strict laws against it.
The courts have zero tolerance or leniency with drunk drivers – especially if they cause an accident. Repercussions from the collision will cost you a fortune and follow you for the rest of your life.
Similar to reckless driving, tailgating substantially increases the likelihood of accidents – specifically rear-end collisions.
Tailgating decreases the safety margin between you and the car in front of you – and leaves little room for reaction. For instance, if the car in front of you has to slam on the brakes, you will have less time to react and may run into the back of the vehicle.
Tailgating and aggressive driving creates stress for everyone else on the road and can lead to mistakes or retaliatory aggression, further increasing the risk of an accident.
Just like speeding and reckless driving, do your best to keep emotions out of the vehicle and maintain a safe distance between you and other people around you.
Bad weather is one of the more common causes of car crashes. Wisconsin roadways are commonly subjected to rain, snow, fog, sleet, and icy conditions – which make it difficult for drivers to see other vehicles, pedestrians, or road signs.
Adverse weather also impacts tire traction and can create difficulties in steering, stopping, and maintaining control of the vehicle.
Now, weather conditions alone are not the fault of the driver. However, drivers must take extra care to ensure they are properly adapted to the road conditions and are driving safely, this includes
Wisconsin has some of the most extreme weather in the country. It’s essential that all drivers know how to accommodate.
Experts say that fatigued/drowsy driving is just as dangerous as drunk driving – and is one of the most common causes of car accidents.
Like alcohol, fatigue on the road compromises a driver’s alertness, concentration, and response time. Fatigue commonly results in microsleeps — which are brief periods of inattention that can last from a fraction of a second to 30 seconds. As you could imagine, this is extremely dangerous, especially at high speeds.
Car accidents caused by driver fatigue are usually severe, as drivers do not make proper maneuvers like braking or swerving. Discuss the dangers of driving while fatigued or sleep-deprived. We see a lot of trucking accidents caused by fatigue – as drivers have aggressive schedules to meet. But it’s also a common cause of regular car accidents.
Do your best to get enough sleep before a long drive. If you feel your eyelids getting heavy behind the wheel, pull over to the nearest acceptable spot and nap or grab a coffee.
Weather is not the only cause of poor road conditions.
Potholes, uneven surfaces, loose gravel, bad traffic signals, inadequate signage, poor lighting, and construction can all pose serious challenges on Wisconsin roadways.
For instance, a sudden encounter with a pothole may cause the driver to make a fast, unsafe maneuver to avoid it – resulting in a crash or swerving into oncoming traffic. Additionally, poorly-designed roadways with insufficient warning of curves or sight-obstructing conditions are common causes of car accidents.
Municipalities are required to provide safe road conditions. If they fail to do so, city officials may be liable for subsequent car accidents.
If you’ve been injured in a car accident in Wisconsin – which was not your fault – you have options to seek compensation for your damages (medical bills, lost wages, property damages, pain & suffering, etc.).
When you pursue compensation from the at-fault party, you will need to negotiate with insurance companies – which can get extremely complicated without an attorney on your side.
Your first move is to get in touch with an experienced Wisconsin car accident attorney to discuss your situation and determine the best course of action. At Mahony Law, we offer FREE consultations to victims of Wisconsin car accidents.
Our firm works on a contingency fee agreement – meaning we make our fees in the form of a percentage AFTER we win. We won’t charge any out-of-pocket fees to take your case. Call the office at 262-331-3553, email us at email@example.com, or fill out an online form to start the process.
Abby is the founder of Mahony Law and devotes her time to representing people who have been seriously hurt due to the negligence of others. Abby has handled injury cases of all types, including birth injury, wrongful death, automobile accidents, motorcycle accidents, pedestrian accidents, and truck accidents.
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