An infinite number of distractions divert people's attention while behind the wheel of a car, truck or other vehicle: children can be loud in the backseat, people call and text on their phone, people drive after sleeping for only two hours, and others eat or apply makeup on the highway.
ABC reports that New York in particular is one of the most dangerous states in which to drive. In addition to congestion and poor weather conditions, New York scored the worst on a 2009 national driver survey conducted by GMAC Insurance. This survey tested drivers' general knowledge of traffic signals and safety measures. In that same year the New York Department of Motor Vehicles reported that the state had a total of 314,974 accidents reported, and 1,060 of them were fatal.
Unfortunately, many of these accidents could have been prevented if certain individuals had been aware of the dangers of distracted driving and other common dangerous behaviors.
Annoying Driver Habits and Their Dangers
Most drivers have a few pet peeves that bother them on the road. Some are bothered by drivers in the "fast lane" going well below the speed limit, people forgetting to signal before changing lanes or making a turn or forgetting to turn on their headlights in the evening or in the rain.
Regrettably, even some of the best drivers, who don't do anything listed above, can fall victim to distractions or other influences that impact their ability to drive. Examples include:
- Preoccupation: Drivers who have something other than driving on their mind might have slower reaction times and are at a higher risk for accidents
- Reading: Reading is a leading cause of distracted driving, whether it be reading an iPod, text or important work document
- Tailgating: Following too closely is dangerous, especially if cars in front have to make an immediate stop
- Speeding: Speed limits are posted with safety in mind because the faster a car moves, the less control a driver has over it
This list could go on as there are many reasons car accidents occur. Hopefully the above list reinforces the importance of staying alert and being a defensive driver.
Seek Professional Legal Help
No one wants to be the cause of an accident, but most people are not aware of how their behaviors affect their ability to drive their car. However, if someone is injured in an auto accident it is imperative they contact a qualified personal injury lawyer immediately to discuss their rights, options and future legal claims.