To begin with, there is rarely any “accident.” An accident, according to wordnet.princeton.edu, is “anything that happens suddenly or by chance without an apparent cause.” However, most vehicle “accidents” could have been prevented if one thing was changed in the circumstances leading up to the incident.
Stay Safe With These Car Crash Tips
For example, two cars are approaching each other on a 2-lane highway where the speed limit is 55 MPH and there are no curves or other obstructions to prevent seeing potential problems. One car is traveling the posted speed while the other driver opts to go 75 MPH because they are late for whatever they are heading to.
As the cars near, one of the drivers (it does not matter which) becomes distracted by something. This could be the radio, cell phone ringing, dropped cigarette, conversation in the car, or any other number of hazards. The car with the distracted driver wanders over the middle line at the last moment and the cars meet head-on and your car is totaled or worse yet, you are killed!
Accident? If the car going in excess had been going slower, this may have been avoided. If the distraction did not occur, this would not have happened. “If only” could make the difference…
If only the late driver had left earlier so they weren’t late.
On our nation’s roads, today are more people distracted while driving. A relationship breakup, a sudden death of a loved one, work stresses, fired or laid off from work; these all may plague drivers on the roads.
How can you avoid a situation whereby your encounter results in an “accident?”
1. Expect the unexpected. Do not assume the car in front of you will continue to go in the direction they are heading. Do not think that because their right turn signal is on that they will move to the right. (How many times have you witnessed someone go the opposite direction of their turn signal indication?)
2. Drive defensively. Each vehicle houses the potential for causing or being involved in an “accident.”
3. Leave yourself an “out.” If the car in front of you were to suddenly slam on their brakes, do you have a place to go besides up their tailpipe? If not, you failed to leave an “out.” You should not need to ride so close behind that you cannot duck into another lane or onto the shoulder should the sudden need arise.
4. Allow plenty of time to reach your destination. Sometimes this is thwarted by circumstances. If you leave late, do not try to make up time by speeding, weaving through traffic, etc. Accept that you may be tardy. Contact your destination and make them aware of the delay so you arrive alive instead of not arriving at all.
Remember those two cars at the beginning? If either had followed these steps, they may not have met head-on in an “accident.”
Even those innocently caught up in a traffic incident are not in an “accident.” If they are involved, they may have failed to pay attention to their surroundings, failed to leave their “out,” or did not drive defensively.
You must be constantly aware of your surroundings when traveling as speed can reduce time to react. Are there accidents? Yes, but these are caused by means none of the drivers could control.
That can be defined as an accident.
Cars skidding on ice, leaving roadways at curves, etc are all not accidents. Skidding on ice is caused by going too fast for conditions in most cases. Speed also contributes to many traffic incidents.
To avoid a traffic collision, pay attention to your surroundings and don’t expect drivers to behave rationally, you do not know their mental frame of mind. Nor can you determine their mental capacities of intoxication/inhibited state. All you can do is try to provide the best possible options available should the need arise to avoid obstacles that may appear in your path on your journey. If you do find yourself in an accident, you may need a good car accident lawyer. So, keep that in mind too.