Car Crashes: 5 Simple and Often Overlooked Laws

If we, as a general population, are to reduce the number of crashes that occur annually, there should be a larger focus by individuals to promote safe driving by doing the five simple things.

There were 62,000 car crashes were reported throughout 2016 in the state of Utah. It’s no wonder that some people are nervous about being involved in a crash. The State of Utah’s Department of Public Safety (DOPS) reports that in 2016, there were 26,738 people injured by a car crash and an additional 281 people died as a result of a crash. Of the 62,471 crashes, 43,465 of those crashes resulted in property damage only. From this data, we can infer that nearly 70% of persons involved in a crash did not report an injury at the scene of the crash. Of those 43,465 people who reported uninjured in an accident, it’s likely that a small percentage of them actually sustained soft-tissue injuries. But, due to the trauma of the crash, lack of proper questioning, or other reasons, they reported little or no injury.

It’s naïve to think that because you aren't using a phone or something else while driving, that they are safe from being involved in a crash. According to DOPS, the five leading causes of all crashes in the state of Utah during 2016 are:

  1. Following too closely (24%)
  2. Failure to yield (20%)
  3. Speeding (15%)
  4. Failed to keep in proper lane (13%)
  5. Distracted Driving (9%)

Continually practice making informed driving decisions by; allowing at least two seconds between cars under normal conditions and at least four seconds under poor driving conditions (Safelite Safety, Drive-Safely.net, Queensland Government)), always being on the lookout for signage, other cars, and pedestrians so as to properly yield and to maintain your proper lane (driversed.com, failuretomaintainlane.com), being fully engaged in driving a vehicle safely and not engaging in Distracted Driving (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration), and, becoming more familiar with and following the speed limit (Wikipedia: Speed limits in the United States).

If we would collectively follow these five simple and obvious laws of driving, we could reduce the number of crashes occurring each year by as much as 81%, or at least not be the cause of a crash.