What Causes Car Accidents?


In the United States, car accidents are the leading cause of death for people between the ages of five and 34.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gauges that over 37,000 people died in car accidents in 2017 alone.

While many factors contribute to these accidents, including distracted driving and poor road conditions, some culprits can be avoided. If you are injured in a motor vehicle crash you should consider getting help from lawyers for motor vehicle accidents.

In this article, we’ll look at some common causes of car accidents so you can protect yourself from bad drivers on the road—or avoid becoming one yourself.

Distracted driving

Distracted driving is one of the greatest reasons for car accidents in the United States, and the issue is just getting greater.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, distracted drivers were responsible for 6,000 fatalities in 2015 alone—the most recent year for which data is available.

Distractions can include anything from talking on your phone or texting to eating or adjusting the radio.

The dangers are clear: using your phone while driving increases your chances of crashing by 23 times.

So why does distracted driving remain such a huge issue? Partly because people don’t know how dangerous it is;

they want to utilize their telephones securely while driving and put other distractions behind them—and partly because we’re addicted to our phones.


Speeding is the most widely recognized reason for car accidents, and speeding is dangerous because it increases the distance a vehicle travels before coming to a stop. Speeding also increases your chance of an accident by 19%.

Assuming you are driving north of 25 miles each hour over the speed limit when you get into an accident, you will be charged with reckless driving and could face jail time or fines.

Intoxicated driving

  • Drinking and driving are illegal. Any amount of alcohol impairs a driver’s judgment, reaction time, vision, and ability to control the car.  Tragically, it also increases the risk of severe or fatal injuries from an accident.
  • Drinking and driving can cause property damage. When you drink while driving your car, you’re at risk of damaging your vehicle—and possibly other people’s vehicles.

Poor weather conditions

You may have heard that driving in the rain, snow, or fog is especially dangerous. And you’d be right.

These conditions can make it tough to see hazards on the road, so you need to be extra cautious while driving.

But what do horrible weather conditions have to do with car accidents? Well, they all come down to risk factors like speed and visibility.

Some studies show that during inclement weather, drivers slow down their speed by an average of 10 percent to decrease accident risks.

However, this doesn’t always happen—so if you’re behind the wheel when bad weather hits unexpectedly, your reaction time might not be enough to avoid an accident.

Poor road maintenance

Roads can be dangerous if they are not properly maintained. Poor road maintenance can cause many accidents involving cars and trucks. Poor road conditions can cause accidents in many ways:

  • Road debris may fall onto a vehicle as it travels down the highway, causing damage or injury to either the driver or passengers inside the car.
  • Debris on the road could distract other drivers or cause them to slow down suddenly, leading to an accident that would have been avoided if everything had been clear on their side of traffic.
  • Potholes and other hazards like this are dangerous because they distract drivers from watching where they’re going;

when something catches your eye while driving along at 70 miles per hour (112 kilometers per hour), it’s easy not only to swerve into another lane but also to lose control over how close you are getting before doing so.


Tailgating is a common cause of accidents; it’s dangerous and can lead to severe injuries.

In most countries, tailgating is illegal because it’s unsafe. People who tailgate are breaking the law and could get pulled over by police or fined for doing so.

If you want to avoid an accident caused by tailgating, try these tips:

  • Turn on your turn signal before changing lanes. Like that, different drivers will know that you’re about to make a move and can react accordingly.
  • Look behind yourself every time before moving forward into traffic from an intersection.  That way, you won’t accidentally hit anyone who may have stopped their car immediately behind yours while holding up at a light or stop sign (or something similar).

Reckless driving

Reckless driving is a risk factor for car accidents. Foolish driving will be driving in a manner that imperils or is likely to endanger persons or property.

Reckless driving is not used consistently across jurisdictions, and American law enforcement agencies and courts have proposed various legal definitions.

In the United Kingdom, Australia, and Canada, reckless driving includes speeding and other behaviors such as tailgating, weaving through traffic, and passing on blind corners.  People who have suffered car crash injuries regularly retain the best personal injury lawyers Perth to help them accordingly.

Reckless Driving Laws In Some Countries:

  • The UK – A conviction could lead to a fine of up to £5000 (USD 7000) along with 6 points on your license
  • Australia – This can result in an instant loss of license for one month, with three months possible if convicted again within two years.
  • New Zealand – A maximum 3-month loss of license along with 6 points

Defective vehicles or auto parts

The most generally perceived justification for car crashes is faulty vehicle parts, which can be either the result of defective materials or poor manufacturing.

Deficient brakes and tires are the most well-known types of defects in cars. As well as being a danger to their drivers and occupants, faulty vehicles are also dangerous for other motorists on the road.

Assume you have been harmed in an accident caused by a defective vehicle. In that case, it may be possible for you to hold the manufacturer responsible for your injuries using product liability laws.

If someone else’s negligent driving injured you, you might be able to file a personal injury claim against them under tort law. You will need proof that their actions caused your injuries — this could include eyewitness testimony from other drivers or passengers who saw what happened immediately before or after impact; photos taken at the scene showing damage to both vehicles; police reports filed with local authorities documenting the incident details; and medical records detailing the extent of harm caused by collision (including X-rays).

These are factors that can prompt accidents.

Many factors can lead to a car accident. The most common causes include:

  • Distracted driving (e.g., texting)
  • Speeding
  • Intoxicated driving (alcohol or drugs)
  • Poor weather conditions, such as fog and ice
  • Poor road maintenance, including potholes or cracks in the asphalt

These causes of accidents are preventable in some cases and unavoidable in others.

Distracted driving is often simply a matter of not putting your phone away while you’re on the road.

Speeding can be avoided by slowing down; intoxicated driving could be avoided by not drinking liquor prior to getting in the driver’s seat; unfortunate weather patterns can’t always be dealt with ahead of time – but they can often be prepared with an extra layer of clothing or an umbrella!

Road maintenance issues are usually fixed with new paving materials. However, sometimes older roads need more extensive fixes than just resurfacing them.


That’s a short list of the most common causes of car accidents. There are many other reasons for an accident, but these are the most important ones to be aware of.

As you can see, there’s no need to be afraid when it comes to driving: it’s all about being prepared and alert at all times.