An Indiana Car Accident Lawyer Discusses Safe Driving Tips
According to the National Safety Council (NSC), 42,000 people died in motor vehicle crashes in 2020. In Indiana, more than 800 people die in fatal crashes each year.
There are many contributing factors to roadway fatalities, but the NSC says the 3 biggest causes are driving under the influence of alcohol, speeding, and lack of seat belt use.
Every motorist has a responsibility to drive safely and share the road, but far too many don't, and the result is often a bad car accident that leaves others severely injured or killed.
While it only takes one reckless driver to cause a crash, there are steps you can take to help avoid getting injured in a car accident.
Safe driving tips from INDOT
The Indiana Department of Transportation offers 5 key tips for drivers:
- Wear your seatbelt: Making sure you and all your passengers have their seatbelts on is crucial.
- Do not drive impaired: Never drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- Be an attentive driver: Avoid distractions, such as cell phones.
- Be a defensive driver: Avoid driving aggressively and look out for drivers who do.
- Share the road: Watch out for pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorcyclists. They don't have the same protection as someone who is driving in an enclosed vehicle.
Wearing Your Seatbelt
Studies show that wearing your seatbelt reduces your chance of being killed in a car accident by 60%. You should never operate a vehicle until everyone has their seatbelts buckled. Seatbelts when buckled properly should lie across your upper thighs and fit snug across your shoulders and chest. In Indiana, not wearing your seatbelt can get you pulled over and issued a ticket.
Do not drive impaired
An impaired driver kills someone every 30 seconds in the U.S. Follow these tips to ensure your safety and the safety of other drivers:
- If you plan to drive, don't drink. It is not worth the risk.
- Choose a designated driver beforehand.
- Take public transportation, a rideshare service like Uber or Lyft, or call a taxi.
- If you see an impaired driver, report them to the police right away. You could save someone's life.
Driving while distracted can have deadly consequences. This is especially true for texting and driving, which has been shown to be at least 6 times more dangerous than drunk driving. You should also get enough rest to avoid fatigue. According to Drivers Education USA, at least 100,000 crashes are caused by drowsy driving. If driving for long periods of time, taking breaks at least every 2 hours to get out of your car and move around has been shown to reduce fatigue.
Aggressive drivers are a hazard to everyone else on the road. If you see someone driving aggressively or encounter someone with road rage, try your best to get out of their way. Do not challenge them by speeding, avoid eye contact, and stay in your lane. Report these types of drivers to the authorities.
Share The Road
Drivers need to watch for other users of the road.
Watch out for motorcycles. Due to their smaller size, they can be hard to spot in traffic. Watch out when making a left turn, as this is often the most dangerous scenario for oncoming motorcyclists.
You should also be on the lookout for pedestrians and stop at all crosswalks. Reduce your speed when passing a bicyclist, give them plenty of room, and watch out for them when making a turn.
Legal help is available for accident victims
Remember, there's only so much you can do to protect yourself while driving. Ultimately, your safety largely lies in the hands of others and the decisions they make.
That's why if someone causes a crash that results in injury or death, it's important to hold the at-fault driver accountable and send a strong message to others that negligence will not be tolerated on our roads and highways.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, the legal team at Glaser and Ebbs can help you recover the financial compensation you're entitled to. Our personal injury attorneys have more than 100 years of combined experience helping car accident victims just like you, and we will fight for every dollar you deserve.
To see how we can help you, contact us today for a free consultation with an experienced Indiana car accident lawyer. We have six offices located throughout the state, including Fort Wayne and Indianapolis.