Even the most common car accidents can be stressful. As one of the leading causes of injury in the United States, everyone will probably be involved in a car accident sometime in their lifetime. Thankfully, most car accidents only result in property damage and minor injury, though more serious accidents can and do happen every day. Some types of car accidents are more common than others – what are the most common types of car accidents in San Diego?
Factors in San Diego Car Accidents
It should come as no surprise that the leading contributing factor in car accidents throughout San Diego County is speeding. The second most common is improper turning, followed by failing to yield. Other factors contributing to accidents include failing to follow at a safe distance and drug and alcohol use.
Car Accident Statistics in San Diego
There were 76 fatal car accidents in 2014, involving 125 vehicles. Of these, only 14 crashes involved someone under the influence of alcohol. There were 150 people involved in fatal accidents, 38 of whom were pedestrians. The majority of all car accidents in San Diego take place on Saturday or Sunday afternoons, though they are also common during afternoon rush hour.
San Diego ranks consistently at or slightly above average compared to the state of California’s accident rate. Most of these involve only property damage or are “fender benders.” Others, however, result in injury.
Causes of San Diego Car Accidents
As you might expect, rear-end collisions are the most common type of crash in the San Diego area, with 76,858 between 2000 and 2009. The rest are as follows:
• Broadsiding (“t-boning”): 59,046’
• Hitting an object: 28,708
• Head-on collisions: 15,495
• Sideswiping: 18,515
• Pedestrian and auto accidents: 10,233
• Overturning: 10,230
Accidents involving pedestrians are not very common, but they are slightly more common that accidents involving an overturned vehicle. These types of accidents are often serious and may lead to long term or even permanently disabling injury.
Protecting Yourself From the Most Common Types of Accidents
While we can’t always avoid other drivers on the road, there are certain things we can do to reduce our risk of being in an accident and suffering subsequent injury. These include:
• Following at a safe distance. Leaving enough room between yourself and the car ahead of you is the simplest way to avoiding rear-end accidents. This rule also applies to pedestrians, motorcycles, and bicycles. Always allow at least five feet between your car a pedestrian or bicyclist on the shoulder.
• Put away your phone. Distracted driving is becoming a common factor in San Diego car accidents. Avoid texting or talking on your phone while driving – it’s the law. Distracted driving also applies to operating your navigation system, applying makeup, or even fiddling with your radio, so take care of these tasks before beginning your car.
• Remaining vigilant. Never get behind the wheel if you’re under the influence of drugs or alcohol or if you feel too drowsy to drive.
Car accidents are a common occurrence in our area. By knowing the contributing factors, you can take steps to protect your family and reduce your risk of injury.