Each year, the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute (ICJI) uses data collected by its Traffic Safety Division to analyze the annual number of car crashes and fatalities caused by traffic accidents. They publish their findings, along with annual goals for road safety in their Crash Facts pamphlet. This research provides an in-depth look at the top causes of car accidents in Indiana.
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Top Causes of Indiana Car Accidents
1. Driving while impaired.
Recent data ICJII collected from the NHTSA’s Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) indicates that 22 percent of Indiana’s traffic-related fatalities were caused by drivers who were under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
2. Not wearing a seatbelt.
While seatbelt usage has increased among Indiana drivers, there’s still plenty of headway to be made. The Crash Facts show that 51 percent of those killed in a car accident were not wearing their seatbelts.
The state was fortunate to see a reduction in crashes caused by speeding, especially since 2014’s figures showed a five-year high. But 2016’s data still pointed to an alarmingly high number of accidents: over 21,000 collisions and nearly 215 fatalities.
Tailgating is generally grouped with other bad habits labeled as “unsafe driving actions,” but it has become the most noted unsafe action, resulting in nearly 40,000 crashes.
5. Failing to yield.
Drivers who refuse to yield to oncoming traffic caused over 35,000 accidents.
6. Unsafely backing up.
Even with the influx of safety features on new cars, such as backup cameras and alarms warning us if we’re about to back into something, many Indiana drivers caused a wreck because they didn’t take proper precautions when reversing.
7. Other driver-related mistakes.
These other “unsafe driving actions” include driving left of center, speeding, unsafely passing another car, driving the wrong way on a one-way road, ignoring road signs, turning incorrectly, and changing lanes without checking for traffic.
8. Distracted driving.
Texting and driving have become the most noted form of distracted driving. But the Crash Facts proved that plenty of other distractions are taking drivers’ attention off the roads. In fact, while cell phone usage was responsible for almost 500 accidents, another 6,100 were attributed to other distractions, such as personal grooming, fiddling with the radio, or tending to children or pets in the car.
9. Drowsy driving.
We all know that drunk driving is dangerous, but driving while drowsy has proved to be even deadlier. Fatigued drivers were responsible for over 1,600 accidents.
10. Accidents caused by pedestrians.
Drivers aren’t the only ones who must obey road rules; pedestrians need to adhere to laws as well. Pedestrians who cross the street against the light, dart in front of cars, or ignore crosswalks are causing a significant number of car crashes.
Hurt in a Car Accident? Call GDS Law Group, LLP.
When you’re injured in a car accident, you may not be equipped to deal with the aftermath while you’re trying to recover. Nonetheless, time is of the essence. If you don’t want to be stuck paying your bills by yourself, you will need to make a claim against the negligent driver who struck you.
Fortunately, the car accident lawyers at GDS Law Group, LLP are here to help. We will handle communications from the insurance adjuster, and we will use our knowledge and experience to fight for fair compensation for your injuries.