What Are the Leading Causes of Car Accidents?

October 29, 2021
West Chester Car Accident Lawyers

Although the leading causes of car accidents have shifted over the years, most collisions are caused by human error. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), at least 90 percent of all traffic accidents in the United States are caused by driver error.

Drivers should know the most common causes of car accidents so they can stay safe on the roads. Listed below are some of the top causes of car accidents in the United States.

Distracted Driving

When most people think about distracted driving, texting on the phone is the first action that comes to mind. Experts have found that sending a text message while driving at 50 miles per hour is the equivalent of driving the entire length of a football field with your eyes closed. Texting or talking is incredibly dangerous, and it will likely lead to an accident.

However, distracted driving is more than just cellphone use. Any act that takes the focus and attention off the road is considered a distraction. This includes eating, listening to loud music, and controlling your navigation device.

To avoid a distracted driving accident, you should do the following:

  • Lock your phone away before driving.
  • Avoid making the radio too loud.
  • Do not eat while driving.
  • Set rules when driving with the family, such as no arguing or overt actions that can distract you.

Driving Under the Influence

It should be common knowledge that any amount of drugs or alcohol in your system inhibits your ability to safely operate a vehicle and will likely cause a crash. Every state has laws in place to help keep the roads safe and punish those that commit such an offense.

However, many drivers do not know that prescription medications and certain over-the-counter drugs can cause similar problems, so it is best to consult with your doctor about any medication you are taking just to be sure.    

Drowsy Driving

Experts believe that drowsy driving is similar to drunk driving. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that driving after staying awake for 18 hours is the equivalent of having the blood alcohol content (BAC) level of 0.05 percent, which is only slightly less than the legal limit.

With the hustle of modern living, it is important to always remind yourself to get enough rest the night before traveling, even if you do not feel tired. Many people make the mistake of forgoing sleep in an effort to get tasks accomplished.

Aggressive Driving

Aggressive driving includes tailgating, speeding, cutting other vehicles off, or forcing other drivers out of their lane, among others. In some cases, aggressive driving can lead to road rage.


Many drivers go over the speed limit. Speeding is very dangerous, and it limits the reaction time of the driver. Traveling fast can cause you to lose control of the vehicle. A car accident that happens at high speeds will cause much more damage and severe injuries.

Weather Conditions

Motorists cannot control the weather, but they are responsible for driving safely at all times. Slow down and be patient in inclement weather conditions. If possible, avoid travel altogether when the weather is poor.

Fog, rain, ice, and snow are concerning weather conditions and should always be approached with caution. Every driver should pay attention to the weather forecast, and they should either reduce speed or pull over if the road conditions become too dangerous.

West Chester Car Accident Lawyers at Eckell Sparks Help Those Injured by Negligent Drivers

There are many causes of car accidents, but negligence is often at the center of each one. If you were injured by a reckless motorist, contact our West Chester car accident lawyers at Eckell, Sparks, Levy, Auerbach, Monte, Sloane, Matthews & Auslander, P.C. today. Call us at 610-565-3701 or fill out our online form for an initial consultation. Located in Media and West Chester, Pennsylvania, we proudly serve clients throughout Delaware County, Chester County, and Montgomery County.