5 Common Causes of Interstate Accidents (and How to Avoid Them!)

Fender benders and minor car accidents happen every day. This minor kind of accident will come with virtually no loss of life and no serious injury. 

However, when we strap ourselves into our metal cages on wheels and take to the roads at 80 miles per hour legally, fender benders no longer happen. Full-on interstate accidents claim the lives of thousands of individuals annually. 

If interstate accidents cause deaths, then what can we do to prevent them? Here are a few of the common causes of interstate accidents along with ways to avoid such deadly, avoidable incidents. 

Distracted Driving

In 2019, over 3,000 people died as a result of car accidents caused by distracted drivers. When you answer a text, the few precious seconds that take your attention can lead to a catastrophic accident.

When individuals are on long road trips on the interstate, they slip their cars into cruise control and typically just sit back and enjoy the ride. It’s easy to believe that a couple of seconds of looking down at a phone could really cause a problem, but it can. 

By definition, distracted driving involves more than just texting though. It refers to anything that diverts your attention from the road. So eating, drinking, fiddling with a navigation or entertainment system, and even talking to people in your own car can distract you from the critical task at hand. 

If you’re looking for how to avoid interstate accidents, begin by simply paying attention all the time that you’re behind the wheel. 

Sleepy Driving

Drowsy driving causes thousands of accidents annually. If you’re feeling sleepy, pull over. Severe sleep deprivation leads to the same response time as what you’d experience when you’re legally drunk. 

Truckers are especially susceptible to sleepy driving since they’re on the road for dozens of hours every week. To avoid making a call to a truck accident lawyer, make sure you snag adequate sleep before you drive. 

Bad Weather 

Bad weather such as heavy rain, sleet, snow, or any other precipitation can compromise your visibility and lead to interstate accidents. 

Take time to look at the forecast before you pull onto the interstate. Then, if the weather looks like it’s going to take a turn for the worst, delay your plans by a day. If you cannot delay your plans, look for an alternate route around the bad weather. 

Compromised Roads

Bad weather can lead to compromised roads. Not only does it impair your ability to see the road, but it affects the quality of the road itself. 

Run a search for the Department of Transportation in the state where you are traveling. They should have a map of your roads along with a legend that tells you the condition of the roads before you travel. Many states even have travel cameras so you can see the condition of the road up close. 

Car Defect

A car defect can cause interstate accidents as well. This is one of the least common causes, but when it happens, the effects are dire. 

When brakes fail or parts malfunction, a driver has little time to react. 

To avoid problems with a car defect, maintain a service schedule. Have your vehicle serviced and tuned up regularly. Mechanics should notice a potentially chronic problem. 

Stay Alert, Avoid Interstate Accidents

Interstate accidents are horrifying and terrifying. They often lead to fatalities. You can void them by staying alert and aware. Use all of your resources such as state DOT websites. 

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