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Examining the Most Common Human-Related Accident Causes

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Joliet personal injury lawyersCar crashes can occur for any number of reasons, including those related to the environment, road conditions, or vehicle, but it is human error that causes the most accidents. The following outlines the most common human-related accident causes and explains what your rights are after an accident occurs. You will also learn where to find quality assistance with your claim.

Most Common Human-Related Causes

The data comes from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration analysis of 5,471 crashes, all of which occurred between July 2005 and December 2007. While they examined other various causes of accidents, those related to humans were broadly divided into four broad categories: decision errors, recognition errors, performance errors, and nonperformance errors.

Approximately 41 percent of all errors were classified as recognition errors. These included accidents caused by distractions (internal and external), inadequate surveillance, and inattention to their surroundings. Another 34 percent were related to decision errors, which included driving too fast for road conditions, taking a curve too quickly, improper or illegal maneuvers, and misjudgment of a gap or the actions of another driver. Performance errors, such as those related to poor directional control or overcompensation, accounted for about 10 percent of all accidents, and nonperformance issues, such as falling asleep at the wheel accounted for about 7 percent of all human-related accidents.

Inadequate Surveillance May Be More Common Than Distracted Driving

Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of accidents in the United States. In fact, the NHTSA study determined that at least 11 percent of all crashes could be attributed to internal distractions, such as eating or using a cell phone behind the wheel. This issue has also rapidly increased since the end date of the study, which was in 2007. The NHTSA study found that inadequate surveillance was an even bigger problem.

Inadequate surveillance issues, such as looking but not seeing another driver, or failed to recognize when it was safe to make a maneuver, accounted for some 20 percent of all crashes, the researchers said. This is also a common issue discussed in motorcycle accidents, which is why the slogan “Look Twice for Bikes” has become such a touchstone for the community.

What the Data Means for Accident Victims

Human error is exceedingly common in car crashes. As such, all car accident victims should ensure they know and understand their rights; this includes their right to pursue compensation. The Joliet car crash lawyers at Law Offices of Tedone and Morton, P.C. can help you exercise this right. We will also protect your best interests and seek the most favorable outcome possible in your case. Call 815-666-1285 and schedule a personalized consultation to learn more.


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