California Single Vehicle Crashes

Many motorists are unaware that single vehicle accidents are some of the most dangerous types of motor vehicle accidents in the state of California. The National Highway Safety Administration reports that 62 percent of all fatal California car accidents were single vehicle accidents. Due to the high rate of single vehicle accidents, it is imperative that motorists in California understand the various factors concerning

Potential Causes of Solo Car Crashes

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration conducted an investigation into the various factors that tend to cause single vehicle accidents. More specifically, this study looked at single vehicle accidents in which a vehicle was run off the road. Run off-road motor vehicle collisions were found by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to occur in a large amount of single motor vehicle crashes that involved substantial injuries or death. The accident that occurred earlier this month on Interstate 5 can be described as a run off road accident because the motorist’s vehicle ultimately went off the road and crashed into a pillar. Some of the factors revealed by this study that most substantially contributes to single vehicle accidents include the following:

  • Adverse Weather Conditions: Single vehicle accidents are more likely to occur in adverse weather conditions like fog, rain, sleet, and snow. There are fewer single vehicle accidents when weather conditions are normal or clear. As a result, drivers are expected to use extra caution while traveling in adverse weather conditions.
  • Age: Motor vehicles that are driven by younger drivers between the ages of 15 to 24 are more likely to be involved in single motor vehicle accidents in comparison to all other age groups of motor vehicle drivers. This younger age group is advised to exercise particular caution while driving to avoid single vehicle accidents.
  • Alcohol: Drivers who operate motor vehicles under the influence of alcohol are more likely to be involved in single vehicle accidents than sober drivers. To prevent these types of accidents, drivers are recommended to not combine alcohol use and motor vehicle operation.
  • High Occupancy Vehicles: Vehicles with occupancy of two or more individuals are more likely to be involved in single vehicle accidents. This increase in motor vehicle accidents is likely because motor vehicle operators are more like to be distracted by passengers when the vehicle is high occupancy.
  • Night Time: Single motor vehicle accidents are more likely to occur during night time rather than day time. As a result, motorists are advised to use an extra amount of caution while driving at night in order to avoid single vehicle collisions.
  • Performance Related Factors: Drivers with performance related factors including inattentiveness, overcorrection of the vehicle, or sleepiness are more likely to be involved in single motor vehicle accidents. Drivers should exercise particular caution while driving if any of these performance-related factors are present.
  • Sex: Male drivers are more likely to be involved in single-vehicle car accidents than female drivers.
  • Speeding:. Speeding vehicles are more likely to be involved in a run off road single vehicle accidents than non-speeding vehicles. Accidents due to speeding vehicles are more likely to occur at spots where the road curves or at embankments. Accidents that occur due to speeding on straight roads are less common than are speeding accidents on curved roads. In many single vehicle collisions, it is difficult to determine the vehicle’s pre-crash speed. In many ways, the single vehicle accident that recently occurred on Interstate 5 is a classic example of a single vehicle accident due to speeding because the motorist lost control of the vehicle on an embankment and also law enforcement has said that the vehicle was traveling at a faster than average rate. Drivers can reduce this single vehicle accident factor by slowing down, particularly in areas where the road curves.

Determining Fault in Single Vehicle Accidents

While this entry has already discussed some of the factors that tend to increase the likelihood of a single vehicle accident of occurring, there are also some factors which directly tend to cause single vehicle accidents including the following:

  • Construction Zones: Construction zones can be found throughout California and these areas must present minimal risk to motor vehicle drivers. Each zone should be properly marked off and have signs informing drivers about the safest way in which to proceed through these areas. When construction zones are not properly maintained, drivers have an increased risk being involved in single vehicle accidents.
  • Defective Automobile Parts: Single vehicle accidents can be directly caused by defective vehicle parts including faulty brakes, steering wheels, tires, or any other part that is required to safely operate and control a motor vehicle. When these items fail to work as intended, a driver can lose control of a vehicle.
  • Defective Roadways: One of the ways that defective roadways can cause single vehicle accidents is by hydroplaning. Roads that are well-designed permit water to drain on the side of the road rather than build up in the middle of the road.
  • Other Drivers’ Errors: Driver error includes a variety of factors like alcohol use, fatigue and speeding. These errors tend to increase the chances that a driver will lose control of a motor vehicle, interfering with the driving of another car and leading to an off road accident like the event that occurred recently on Interstate 5.

If you are involved in a single vehicle accident, even though you were the only one operating the vehicle at the time, there are often other parties that can be found liable including construction companies, automobile manufacturers, and mechanics. As a result, if you are the victim of a single-vehicle accident, consider retaining the legal services of a knowledgeable and talented attorney at The Sargent Firm Injury Lawyers.

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