Can Bad Habits Lead to Car Accidents?

The latest research from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety shows that drivers involved in car accidents know that they are engaging in unsafe behaviors, such as speeding or texting while driving. The AAA Foundation conducts an annual survey related to traffic safety, which is known as the Traffic Safety Culture Index (TSCI). This helps determine bad habits of drivers.

The TSCI reveals a disturbing gap between what drivers perceive as dangerous and how they actually drive. The same survey participants who said that distracted, aggressive, or impaired driving is dangerous, also admitted to engaging in at least one of these behaviors in the past 30 days.

What Are the Results of the TSCI?

Analysis of the TSCI found that drivers who admitted to having bad habits and were in recent crashes were worse than those who had not been in an accident. For example, 50 percent of the drivers who were involved in a recent crash admitted to also talking on a hand-held device while driving in the past month. This is compared to 42 percent of drivers who admitted to cellphone use while driving but were not in a crash.

The disparity is greater when it comes to texting. Of the drivers surveyed, 43 percent who were involved in a crash admitted to texting while driving in the past month, while only 27 percent of drivers not involved in an accident said they text and drive.

The survey also brought to light the fact that 39 percent of participants involved in a recent crash had also run a red light in the past month compared to 30 percent of those not involved in a crash.

Researchers concluded that these drivers were not interested in altering their dangerous driving behaviors, even when it led to accidents.

What Are Common Bad Driving Habits?

Virtually all motor vehicle accidents can be traced back to driver error. Even the best drivers make mistakes, but engaging in the following behaviors increases the chances of an accident:

  • Distracted driving
  • Speeding
  • Drunk or drugged driving
  • Drowsy driving
  • Aggressive driving

What Injuries Are Caused in Car Accidents?

An obvious consequence of bad driving behavior is injury, and even death. Injuries sustained in a car accident can range from whiplash, lacerations, and broken bones, to head and neck injuries, spinal cord damage, and amputations.

After initial pain and discomfort, some injuries have lasting effects, such as chronic pain, disfigurement, disabilities, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Long-term health issues can severely impact a person’s quality of life and financial stability.

How Can I Change my Bad Driving Habits?

Changing bad habits in any facet of life can be difficult. However, bad driving behaviors affect everyone on the road, and we all have a responsibility for the safety of other drivers, passengers, and pedestrians. Practicing the following actions can prevent an accident:

  • Stash your cellphone before you start driving: If your phone is stowed away, you will not be tempted to look at it. If you must use it, safely pull over.
  • Drive sober: Designate a driver, call a taxi or a rideshare service, do whatever it takes to stay off the road if you have been consuming alcohol or drugs of any kind.
  • Drive the speed limit: Leave plenty of time to get to your destination so that you do not have to speed.
  • Get plenty of rest: Fatigue impairs judgement, reaction time, and vision in a way that is similar to alcohol. Do not drive if you feel sleepy.
  • Fasten your seat belt: Everyone in the vehicle should have a seat belt on at all times.

Unfortunately, accidents can still happen, even if you are practicing safe driving. If you are injured in a car accident, it is advisable to contact a lawyer immediately.

Millsboro Car Accident Lawyers at Jacobs & Crumplar, P.A. Fight for Injured Car Accident Victims

If you have injuries from a car accident, we can help you. Our Millsboro car accident lawyers at Jacobs & Crumplar, P.A. will investigate your case and fight to get the maximum compensation available to you. Call us at 302-656-5445 or contact us online for a free consultation. Located in Millsboro and Wilmington, Delaware, we represent clients throughout Dover County, New Castle County, and Sussex County.