The Most Common Causes of Vehicle Accidents | Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp

Virginia injury lawyerIn 2017, there were 127,345 vehicle accidents in the state of Virginia. There were 843 people killed in these crashes and another 65,306 people injured. No matter how good a driver you may be, you are always at risk of being in an accident every time you get in a vehicle, mostly due to the behaviors and actions of other drivers. The following are the most common causes of how car accidents and truck accidents occur.


Roads are designed to handle particular speeds. When a driver goes over the speed limit the road was designed for, they greatly increase their odds – and the odds of drivers around them – of being injured in a crash. Almost 24,000 of the crashes that occurred in Virginia last year happened because a driver was speeding, causing the deaths of 318 people and leaving almost 13,000 victims injured.

Alcohol-Related Crashes

Although there has been a decrease in the number of drunk driving crashes, thanks to stricter drunk driving laws and public education, alcohol-related crashes continue to be one of the most common causes of auto accidents. Last year in Virginia, 7,285 accidents were caused by drunk drivers and responsible for the deaths of 248 victims. Almost 4,500 victims were left with serious injuries.




Distracted Driving

As drunk driving accidents decrease, distracted driving crashes increase. Many safety advocates blame this increase on the popularity of smartphones. Studies have shown that when a driver sends a text message, their eyes are off the road for 4.6 seconds. Other studies have shown that a vehicle traveling 55 mph would travel the length of a football field in that 4.6 seconds, with the driver’s eyes off the road the entire time.

Reckless Driving

Reckless driving is defined as driving with a wanton or willful disregard for safety or the operation of a vehicle in which the driver shows a willful disregard of consequences. There are many driving behaviors which fall under this category such as changing lanes too quickly and/or without signaling, rolling through stop signs, and cutting other drivers off.

Tire Blowouts

There are many reasons why tire blowouts occur, including worn tire treads, under- or over-inflation, and even high temperatures of road surfaces. When a tire does blow, it causes the vehicle to suddenly serve in the opposite direction from the side of the vehicle the blown out tire was on.


Tailgating is another common cause of vehicle accidents and is usually associated with impatient drivers. By following too closely behind the vehicle in front of them, these drivers fail to leave enough time to react in the event of a sudden stop.

Contact a Virginia Injury Attorney

If you have suffered injuries in a car accident caused by another party, contact a Virginia car accident attorney to find out what legal options you may have. At Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp, we are dedicated to helping injured clients obtain the compensation they deserve for their medical bills, lost income, and other losses their injuries have caused. Call (833) 997-1774 for a free case evaluation.