Traffic accidents are the third leading cause of injury, death, and hospitalization in Los Angeles. Last year, the number of car accidents in the city caused thousands of injuries and at least 260 deaths. Even if you drive safely you are at a risk of harm if you decide to drive in Los Angeles. This does not mean that you should forego driving altogether. Instead, be mindful of where and when accidents are most likely to occur and be particularly cautious during those times.
Did you know that you are actually more likely to be involved in a car accident in your own neighborhood than you are on a long road trip? One study found that the majority of traffic accidents happen within 25 miles of home. Another study found that nearly 75 percent of traffic accidents occur when you are less than 15 miles from home.
Why are you more likely be to in a traffic accident near your home? The answer to this comes down to frequency. You spend a lot of time driving in close proximity to your home – driving to work, the grocery store, school, and other locations that you travel to frequently. Unless you work a significant distance from your home or travel regularly, you make long-distance trips less frequently. Since most of your time is spent driving within a 25-mile radius of your home, you are much more likely to be involved in an accident there.
Los Angeles experiences heavy commuter traffic. As the economy continues to get better, and more Los Angeles residents are getting jobs, the roads are seeing a greater amount of traffic. As more cars are on the road, the chances of an accident happening also increase. As drivers sit in Los Angeles traffic they may be more likely to talk on the phone, text, check emails, eat, and engage in other distracted behaviors. Once the traffic starts moving, drivers may speed to make up lost time. All of these behaviors can cause car accidents in Los Angeles.
Infrequently traveled roads, especially those in less-populated Los Angeles suburbs, are also the frequent site of car accidents. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were approximately 3,000 more car accidents on rural California roads than urban California roads in 2013.
As we mentioned above, Los Angeles drivers who are stuck in traffic are likely to engage in behaviors that contribute to traffic accidents. In 2014, speed-related accidents resulted in nearly 14,500 injuries and deaths. Distracted driving, which includes those times you are stuck in traffic and barely crawling along, also put drivers at an increased risk of harm. One study found that an accident is 23 times more likely if a driver is texting.
Many car accidents also happen at night. In 2014, more than 7,000 car accidents were reported to have occurred between the hours of 9PM and 3AM. Drivers on the road between these hours are more likely to be fatigued, distracted, and have difficulty seeing their surroundings. This is especially true for now and/or elderly drivers.
Have you been injured in a Los Angeles car accident? You may be entitled to recover compensation if someone else’s negligence caused your accident. This compensation can help to pay for costs and injuries related to your accident including, but not limited to:
Contact Glotzer & Leib, LLP to learn about how our Los Angeles car accident attorneys can help you maximize the award you receive. During your free consultation, we will review your case, explain your rights, and answer any questions you have.
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