Determining the cause of an accident is the first step in filing a successful personal injury claim. There are several variables to consider, but most Kansas City car accidents can be attributed to a few common causes.
Common Causes of Kansas City Car Accidents
Common causes of car accidents include the following:
- Aggressive driving. Being late to your destination or getting frustrated with other drivers can cause aggressive behaviors such as tailgating, running a red light, or weaving in and out of traffic. This puts everyone on the road at risk, even when it doesn’t rise to the level of road rage.
- Complicated roadways. Poorly designed roads can put drivers at risk when tight curves, improper signage, and heavy traffic increase the risk of drivers making errors that could lead to an accident.
- Construction zones. The work going on in construction zones is constantly changing, which means the area is often unpredictable and confusing to navigate. Drivers who are speeding or inattentive can easily make mistakes that lead to accidents.
- Drowsy driving. Reaction times are significantly impaired when someone is fatigued. Judgment and problem-solving are also affected.
- Distracted driving. Texting, eating, talking to passengers, or engaging in any activity that takes focus away from the road increases the risk of an accident.
- Drugged driving. Drugged driving includes driving under the influence of illegal street drugs as well as prescription medications known to cause drowsiness or other forms of impairment.
- Drunk driving. Even though 0.08% is the legal blood alcohol content (BAC) limit for adults, impairment that increases the risk of an accident can occur at lower levels.
- Elderly drivers. Older drivers are not inherently unsafe, but they can struggle with vision, motor skills, and cognitive impairments that increase the risk of an accident.
- Reckless driving. Reckless drivers put everyone at risk by not following the rules of the road. They are deliberately careless with their own safety as well as the safety of others.
- Speeding. Exceeding the speed limit or going too fast for weather conditions can make it difficult to stop or otherwise react in time to prevent an accident.
- Tailgating. Drivers often drastically underestimate how much time is needed to stop their vehicle safely. A three-second following distance is the minimum safe amount, but you may need a six-second distance when weather conditions are poor. Some experts even recommend a 10-second following distance under challenging conditions of any type.
- Teen drivers. Driving is an acquired skill, which means teen drivers are more prone to accidents due to their inexperience on the road.
- Tire blowouts. Blowouts can cause drivers to swerve unexpectedly. Proper maintenance of your vehicle, including checking the air pressure in your tires regularly, is the best way to reduce the risk of this type of accident.
- Weather conditions. Rain, fog, snow, and ice can create conditions that impede visibility and make it harder to maintain control of your vehicle on the road. Teen drivers and elderly drivers may be particularly vulnerable to weather-related accidents.
- Wrong-way driving. Turning the wrong way down a one-way street creates conditions that are ripe for an accident. Inattentiveness, inexperience, or unfamiliarity with the area can increase the odds of this type of accident.
Liability for Partially At-Fault Drivers
Although some accidents are very clearly the fault of one person, it’s also possible for both drivers to have contributed to the accident to some extent. If you are found to be partially at fault for the accident that caused your injuries, Missouri law still allows you to seek compensation via a personal injury claim. However, your final settlement will be proportionately reduced to reflect your own liability for the accident.
Regardless of whether you think you may be partially at-fault for an accident, you should never admit fault to the other driver. This can create complications for your personal injury claim, especially if it is later discovered that your perception is incorrect and you did not actually contribute to the crash.
Have You Been Injured in a Kansas City Car Accident?
If you've been hurt in a Kansas City car accident you need to speak with an experienced car accident attorney as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our Kansas City office directly at 816.249.2101 to schedule your free consultation.