Common Causes of Traffic Fatalities in California

Common Causes of Traffic Fatalities in California


Over 3,000 people die in car crashes in California every year. At The May Firm, we see firsthand these victims’ families working to recover from their loss. There are a number of different reasons that a traffic accident could happen, but a fatal accident is never any less devastating. It is our hope that allowing the general public more information on what causes California traffic fatalities may help everyone to be more cautious and avoid accidents.

Here are the leading causes of traffic fatalities in the state of California:

1. Drunk Driving

Drunk driving accidents account for 35% of all California traffic fatalities. The legal blood alcohol limit in California is 0.08% BAC, like in most of the United States. If you or a friend has been out drinking, get a ride, call a cab or an Uber, or find somewhere to spend the night, rather than driving under the influence and potentially killing yourself or an innocent victim.

2. Unsafe Speed

Driving too fast is dangerous because you can easily lose control of your vehicle and strike another moving vehicle, a railing, a tree, or a traffic sign. Speed limit signs are there for your safety, so please obey them. Likewise, driving too slowly on the Interstate or on a road with a higher speed limit can also be a hazard, so keep up with traffic.

3. Failing to Yield to Right-of-Way

Knowing the laws of the road and who has the right-of-way when is essential to safely operating a motor vehicle. Pay attention to your green arrows, be sure absolutely no cars are coming before turning out into or in front of traffic, and don’t take chances when making left turns with oncoming traffic.

4. Improper Turning

There are many different turns that can be classified as an improper turn. For example, making a turn when there is a “No Turn on Red” sign, turning without coming to a full stop at a stop sign or red light, failing to use your turn signal, and making a left at a red light when it is prohibited are all considered improper turning. When you make these mistakes, they can result in a car accident, so please stay safe and always make proper turns. Do not turn or make u-turns where it is not allowed.

5. Failure to Obey Traffic Signs

Not paying attention can cause you to ignore traffic signs or signals, like running a red light and colliding with oncoming traffic. Be sure that you’re always looking for and obeying traffic signs. Put your phone away so that you aren’t driving distracted and don’t miss any signs.

These are the top five causes of California traffic fatalities. Keep these in mind when driving your vehicle, and always be safe so that you can avoid getting into a collision yourself.

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