Do you insist driving back home after having a few drinks with your friends or after hearing about the storm warnings? Here’s the thing – automobile road accidents are inevitable and are quite common. In fact, roughly 1.3 million people fall victims to fatal road accidents, which equates to more than 3,000 casualties per day. In today’s world, it’s just a risk that you shouldn’t take. That’s why it is important to be aware of the 10 most common road accidents – so you can avoid them.
Vehicle Malfunction Due to Poor Maintenance
Vehicles contain several parts that wear and tear without regular servicing. Improper wheel alignment, damaged brake rotors, a failing battery – these are some of the potentially dangerous consequences of poor maintenance. This can be avoided by scheduling an inspection at the car shop periodically. Don’t wait for something to feel wrong before you visit the shop. The great news is that any rental car, truck or SUV that you book through VroomVroomVroom is provided to you by a car rental provider that is trusted worldwide, and that keeps a perfectly maintained fleet of vehicles!
Drunk Driving Accidents
Driving under the influence of alcohol, unsurprisingly, is one of the most common reasons for road accidents. Once it enters your system, it impedes the reaction time, dulls the senses, and clouds the judgment of the driver. Some can barely even stand up, yet they still choose to drive. A little planning whenever going to parties or beer night with friends is important to avoid driving drunk. You can limit your alcohol intake or wait until the effect of it subsides. When all else fails, promptly ask the host if you can sleep over or ask someone to drive you back home.
Road Crashes Due to Bad Roads
It doesn’t matter whether you are driving a 4-Wheeler or an SUV; when you hit a pothole there’s a big chance of getting into a car accident. Madagascar and Costa Rica, while beautiful and filled with wonderful sights, are countries that are known for not really having smooth roads. This is why it is always a good idea to abide by local speed limits wherever you’re driving on holiday or business, as the limits are posted there for a reason. Drive cautiously!
Another common road accident occurs when a driver switches lanes or does a U-turn – unaware of a bike that is moving within the car’s blind spot. This is why it is crucial to check all your mirrors and use your turn signals. If possible, ask your passenger to check for nearby vehicles before changing lanes. Or better yet, just stay in your lane.
Driving too close to the vehicle in front of you, especially at high speeds, can lead to a road accident. That is why it is crucial to exercise caution and patience at all times when driving. Always leave a one-car-length space from the car in front of you for each speed increments of 10 miles per hour.
Bad weather increases the risk of road accidents in two ways; by impeding the driver’s vision and by causing skidding. This is particularly true in heavy rain or snow. Related accidents can be avoided by choosing not to drive altogether, or by driving slowly on well-lit roads.
Falling Asleep while Driving
You need to be completely alert when driving and it won’t happen if you are sleepy. If you’ve been awake for more than 23 hours, then you are most likely to fall asleep while driving. In case you feel too tired and sleepy to drive, consider having a quick break in a nearby coffee shop or just stay in a motel for a snooze.
Texting While Driving
The urge to reach out to your phone and check the latest unread text message is often tempting. It could be your boss, your parents, your wife/husband, or your boyfriend/girlfriend about to say something important, and not knowing who texted you can often drive you crazy. However, remember that driving to your destination in one piece and not hurting other people should be your number one priority. If you really need to check your phone, pull over your rental car and put the hazard lights on.
Accidents due to Sound Pollution
Drivers on the road communicate with one another using two senses: sound and sight. If you remove one of those things, then you’re basically blocking 50% of the communication on the road. Remember to keep the volume of your music low and keep your ears open for car horns.
Crashing due to speeding is, of course, still the number one road accident in the world. In fact, statistics show that about 42% of all road accidents are related to speeding directly or indirectly. It could lead to missed road signs, mishandling, oversteering, road rage, and tailgating crashes. Just remember that the solution to not being late is to wake up early, and not to drive more quickly.
James Javier is an engineering student, automotive enthusiast and a member of the Toyota Fortuner Club in the Philippines, his passion for SUVs and travelling constantly fuels him to share his experiences on the road. He also blogs about his travels especially tips to stay safe on the road. You can also follow him on Twitter with username @JM_Jav21.