Motor vehicle collisions happen every day around New York, and the vast majority of them could be prevented if drivers were just a little bit more careful. Despite the inherent risks of driving, most people treat it like a stressful burden, multitasking at the wheel and driving as fast as possible just to shave a few seconds off of their daily commute.
No one can be a perfect driver all the time, but everyone can take small steps to help themselves stay safer out on the New York roads. Understanding the leading causes of motor vehicle crashes can be a great way to determine what safety rules will have the greatest impact on you and the people who ride with you.
Driver mistakes are part of all the major crash causes
According to crash data from March of 2021, the top five causes of crashes in New York City were driver distraction or inattention, following too closely, improper passing or lane use, passing too closely, failure to yield the right-of-way, unsafe backing and unsafe speeds.
Driver distraction is responsible for many more crashes than any other cause, with 2274 crashes attributed to this issue. The second leading risk factor, following too closely, only played a role in 613 crashes.
How can you reduce your crash risk?
Obviously, you can help reduce your distracted driving crash risk by choosing to set your phone down and turn the ringer off every time you get in the car. You can also make it a point to not engage with passengers and intense conversations or to flip through radio stations while actively driving.
Distraction takes many forms, and it is usually best to keep your hands on the wheel and your mind focused so that everyone arrives safely. Paying attention to where you back up, giving plenty of space when passing, and adjusting your speed for traffic and weather conditions can also help you prevent causing a crash.
No amount of safety habits can protect you from other people
Unfortunately, your best driving habits will do little to reduce the risk you have of other people causing a crash. Irresponsible drivers are everywhere, and you can’t always spot them before they do something dangerous.
What you can do is hold them accountable by filing an insurance claim against them for any losses you suffered and for your going to court if they don’t have enough insurance to cover the damages when they cause a wreck.