The Leading Causes Of Car Accidents And How You Can Prevent Them

Most car accidents happen so suddenly. In one moment, you’re driving down the road so peacefully, and the next thing you know, the brake lights on the vehicle in front of you shine, you slam your foot on the brake pedal, your brakes squeal, and your body is jolted forward as your vehicle slams into the car in front of you.

It goes without saying—getting involved in a car accident can lead to injuries, financial struggles, and emotional turmoil. So, you might wonder, is there something you could have done to prevent the accident from happening and spare yourself from dealing with California car accident attorneys if the accident happened in, let’s say, Anaheim or San Diego? A way to protect your rights and get compensation for your damages irrespective of whether or not you were the driver at fault?

While this may not always be the case, car accidents can often be prevented. This brief article will lay out some of the leading causes of car accidents to help you better understand what you can do to prevent them from happening.

Drunk Driving

very drunk woman
Photo by Paul Holloway

It’s well known that when you drink alcohol, you lose the ability to function and focus properly. Therefore, it goes without saying that drinking is extremely dangerous when operating a vehicle. 

Moreover, even if you don’t cause an accident on the road, if you’re caught drinking and driving above the legal limit in the state where you drive, the penalties might be severe as you would have a huge fine to pay, and you even risk going behind bars, having your car impounded, and your license suspended. And be mindful of this; even one beer or one glass of wine can impair your ability to drive by reducing your reaction time and other critical driving abilities. 

To avoid this, you should stop going out with your vehicle if you plan on drinking even a single drop of alcohol and use a ride service or a designated driver instead. However, if you ever find yourself in an unavoidable situation that requires a toast while your car is parked outside, it would be best for you to order a non-alcoholic beer or a glass of non alcoholic wine to get through the occasion so that you won’t compromise your ability to drive. 


Speed limit signs are put in place for a reason as they inform you of the safest speed to travel on each roadway. This could be due to sharp turns, higher traffic, and many other roadway factors affecting the particular road’s speed limit. After all, the faster you drive, the slower your reaction time will be if you suddenly need to take a turn or brake in order to prevent a potential car accident. For that reason, always drive within the given speed limit and don’t put yourself in dangerous road situations because of fast driving.


texting while driving
Photo via Pexels

While thirty-six states plus the District of Columbia have phone use bans, especially targeting young drivers, many drivers still do it. And even though talking on a mobile phone while driving is already dangerous enough, texting is even worse as it requires you to take your eyes right off the road in front of you. 

Even driving while using a Bluetooth speaker or a hands-free device can be distracting and jeopardize you. To eliminate this potential hazard, it’s good practice not only to put your mobile phone away while driving but to turn it off entirely so you won’t have the urge to answer if somebody rings. However, if you need to make an immediate phone call, it’s in your best interest to park your vehicle, make the phone call, and continue your ride after that.

Bad Weather 

Right before you hit the road, always check whether your windshield wipers are in working order and that your washer fluid is topped up so if you get caught in a rainstorm or snowstorm, you’ll be able to keep your sight unobstructed. Correspondingly, during the winter, always thoroughly defrost your windshield before moving even a single mile.

In general, it’s best to avoid going out for a drive in the snow, mainly if your car is a rear-wheel drive. Nevertheless, if you need to drive somewhere in the snow, always drive slowly, use the gas and brake pedals gently, and leave increased stopping distance between you and the car in front of you.


Nowadays, many drivers are impatient, which often leads to driving too close to another vehicle, making them unable to react in time if the car in front of them suddenly brakes. As a matter of fact, many fatal car accidents have occurred because of tailgating when a driver perilously tailgates another driver at high speeds and is unable to stop in time when the other car’s rear lights come on.   

To avoid this, you should always allow at least one car length between your car and the car in front of you for every ten miles per hour you drive. 

Final Thoughts

Finally, while there are numerous things you can do to help prevent car accidents, it’s not always possible to avoid the unexpected. Nevertheless, as a responsible driver, it’s your duty and obligation to take active measures against the aforementioned leading causes of car accidents and do everything within your power not to cause any accidents on the road.




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Noman covers automotive news and reviews for Unfinished Man. His passion for cars informs his in-depth assessments of the latest models and technologies. Noman provides readers with insightful takes on today's top makes and models from his hands-on testing and research.

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