If you own a car, it will be inevitable to encounter car accidents. All you can do is avoid them from happening by preparing your car and yourself, making it safer for your vehicle to drive, and conduct a pre-check whenever you want to use it.
According to the WHO, approximately, 1.35 million people die each year in car crashes. In some countries, it can cost 3% of a country’s gross domestic product. Not all casualties in car accidents only involve drivers and passengers. Half of the global traffic deaths are among vulnerable road users. They are pedestrians, cyclists, and motorcyclists.
Here are different kinds of car accidents and how to avoid them.
The most common of car accidents and also one of the most dangerous. Accidents from head-on collisions result in the greatest number of injuries and fatalities. For those who are not familiar with this type of accident, it happens when two cars running in the opposite direction collide bumper to bumper.
There are different causes for a head-on collision to happen, and these are:
- A sudden change of lane.
- Road obstacles.
- Intoxicated driver (drugs or alcohol).
- Poor judgment.
- Poor visibility.
- Vehicle malfunctions such as tire blowouts.
- Not following road signs.
- Distracted driving.
The best thing to do when driving and avoid head-on collision accidents is to drive within the speed limit and avoid drunk driving as much as possible. Check the road if constructions are going on or some obstacles may cause a fatal accident—checking your car condition before driving is also necessary.
Merging accidents or sideswipe accidents happen when two vehicles merge in one lane and the other car is sideswiped. If you happen to be caught in a merging lane, drivers need to communicate to give way for one to pass. Some drivers are not generous in giving you the road. Thus, sideswipes can happen.
Some reasons why merge accidents happen:
- A merging motorist is running too fast or too slow.
- Changing lanes without turning on the signal.
- Crossing multiple lanes when merging.
- Cutting off other vehicles to merge a lane or change lanes.
To avoid a merging accident, the driver should always use a signal indicator. If you are changing lanes, change with caution and avoid cutting off other vehicles. Communicate with the other motorists, so they would know your plans in a merge lane.
Another kind of car accident that can be surprising and dangerous is the rear-end collision. This kind of accident is caused when one vehicle crashes to the back of another car or the rear end, which usually is in front of the crashing vehicle. Accidents like this happen when the vehicle behind is tailgating the one in front. If a sudden brake is applied by the car in front, and the car behind is running fast and is not able to apply the brake, a collision happens.
The main reason for rear-end collision is distracted driving that is caused by:
- Talking on the phone or the passengers.
- Eating and drinking.
All of these can cause a distraction for the driver and, in return, cause accidents. To avoid such an accident, the driver must focus on driving and avoid tailgating another vehicle. You must also check on whether someone is behind you before hitting the break if you are the lead vehicle.
Hydroplaning collisions happen when the road is wet. During hydroplaning, the tire is barely in contact with the road, this could happen if you accidentally run through a deep puddle, and when you try to keep your car on the road, it starts slipping because it is wet.
When this happens, it is hard for the motorist to control the vehicle and the direction it’s going. Because the car is uncontrollable, there is a possibility that the car can crash into a pole, collide with another vehicle, or fall on a cliff. Hydroplaning is one of the most dangerous accidents that can happen on the road.
Like all other accidents, you can avoid hydroplaning by:
- Avoiding driving on wet roads.
- Checking tire treads regularly.
- Never apply sudden breaks or accelerate further. Let the car coast at a lower speed while using steady pressure.
Parked — Car Collision
Parked car collisions or sometimes referred to as low-speed crashes. They can be accidents in parking areas, driveways, or residential areas involving another car or a pedestrian. Even though this is a low-speed crash, the accident can still damage the car or cause injury to the passenger, driver, or pedestrian.
Cars may not be damaged, but dents, scratches, and cracks/breaks can still ruin a car’s beautiful image. There is a small percentage for the accident to be fatal, but it can cause severe damage for a pedestrian because of external causes.
Parked car collisions can be avoided by:
- Making sure no cars or pedestrians are coming out of a driveway or parking area.
- Do not rely on a rearview mirror or back camera. Also, turn around to check if the perimeter is clear.
This accident can be dangerous, especially if you are running fast and cannot apply the brake the moment you see an animal crossing the road. In the US, most wildlife collisions are caused by deer. It was estimated to reach 1.23 million accidents in a year because of deer crossing or galloping on the road.
If you are trying to avoid accidents involving animals, these are the things you should do:
- Use high beam lights. It will help you to see animals crossing in the dark.
- Avoid forest areas.
- Do not neglect the road signs.
- Keep the speed limit.
Road accidents involving cars can be fatal to the driver, the passenger, and the pedestrian. There are road signs that we should not ignore. They were posted there for safety reasons and following them can save lives. If you are driving a car, make sure to check your vehicle before going on a road trip. Ensure that your vehicle has enough fuel, the tires have enough air and check your car’s engine if there are signs of wear and tear that need immediate fixing. As a responsible vehicle owner, you must know what you must do and secure before going out of your driveway. Accidents cannot be predicted, but they can always be avoided. Check out the different kinds of car accidents and how to avoid them.