The majority of drivers in Houston and throughout the entire United States take unnecessary and dangerous risks behind the wheel. In fact, AAA NewsRoom indicates close to 90 percent of all drivers do things which are unsafe when driving. These motorists can significantly increase the risk of car accidents occurring.
When a driver engages in a behavior that is considered unsafe, the motorist should be held accountable for his or her actions. This could mean the motorist's insurer pays for damages if the driver causes serious injuries or fatalities as a direct result of a Houston car wreck.
Most Drivers Are Engaging in Unsafe Driving Behavior
According to AAA NewsRoom, a full 87 percent of drivers reported they had done at least one unsafe thing while driving in the 30 days before taking the AAA survey. The behaviors the drivers admitted to engaging in included:
- Driving while they were distracted.
- Impaired driving.
- Exceeding the speed limit or driving too quickly based on the conditions on the road.
- Going through a red light without stopping.
- Failing to wear a seat belt while operating a motor vehicle.
The high number of people who engage in dangerous behaviors is a major concern at a time when close to 33,000 people died in collisions in the United States over the course of 2014. The safety of the roads is actually declining rather than improving, with experts projecting a nine percent increase in car accident fatalities in 2015 compared with the rate of deaths which occurred on U.S. roads in 2014. Drivers are contributing to rising death rates by voluntarily doing things which they know are dangerous.
The President and CEO of the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety commented on the troubling results of the survey, stating: "There is a culture of indifference for far too many drivers when it comes to road safety." Unfortunately, while most drivers recognize they are doing some high risk things like using a phone or speeding, most people also believe they are actually safer than other drivers and believe they can control their actions so the dangerous behaviors aren't really creating an added risk.
Every driver should be aware of the dangers associated with the dangerous behaviors which they admitted to engaging in. Motorists should make a real commitment to stay within the speed limit, to focus on the road at all times, to obey traffic signals, to drive sober only, and to wear a seat belt whether they are a driver or a passenger in a car. If drivers could make more careful choices and avoid doing behaviors they know are high risk, the death toll could come down.
One in five drivers have been involved in a motor vehicle accident which was serious enough to result in someone being hospitalized, and one in three drivers have known a friend or relative who sustained a serious crash injury. This personal up-front knowledge of the risks should be enough to convince motorists not to engage in behaviors making accidents more likely. Unfortunately, this continued perception that they are safer and they are the exception to the rule continues to lead motorists to take unnecessary risks and put themselves and others in danger.