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Car driver distracted by smartphone while on the road

Car Accident Risks in Kentucky

Tourism is the 3rd largest industry in the Commonwealth of Kentucky, home of the legendary Kentucky Derby horse race and bluegrass music. Like anywhere else in the world, car accidents do occur, however, knowing what makes Kentucky unique and how most accidents occur in this state is one way to keep yourself informed and mitigate the risks when planning a self-drive trip on the roads of the Bluegrass State.

According to the US Department of Transportation’s Traffic Safety Facts Research Note for 2015, the Nation lost 35,092 people in car crashes on U.S. roadways, while a report on Kentucky’s traffic collisions states that there were 761 victims of fatal traffic collisions in 2015 – a 14 per cent increase over the prior year. These statistics highlight the importance of always being aware of the road in front of you, not only to keep yourself safe but those around you as well.

Top Causes Of Accidents In Kentucky

Drunk Driving

Initiatives against intoxicated driving have made significant progress recently which has resulted in safer roads for everybody. Drunk driving still isn’t completely a thing of the past, however. In Kentucky, the BAC (Blood Alcohol Content) threshold is 0.08%, after which you are legally intoxicated. One of the most insidious aspects of drunk driving is that it places the lives of other motorists at risk without them being aware of the fact until it is too late. Driving requires a sound body and mind 100% of the time.

To avoid the horrendous ramifications of drunk driving, be sure to never drink and drive. Likewise, discourage others who have had too much to drink from driving their vehicle home.

Distracted Driving

While many media campaigns focus on raising awareness of drinking and driving risks, few focus on the more common, and yet equivalent, risk of distracted driving. Many people are okay with drivers texting at a red light or staying updated on something happening in their life. Distracted driving happens at a much more frequent rate than drunken driving does with similar odds of being the cause of a major car accident. Any kind of distracted driving can precede an accident, even something as simple as changing radio stations.

To minimize the risks associated with distracted driving set your smartphone up for hands-free operation. Most vehicles nowadays have Bluetooth enabled sound systems installed. Take the time to properly set these up, including your vehicle’s mirror adjustments, before you’re in motion so you aren’t caught off guard.

Speeding

Traffic officers aren’t just killjoys out there to destroy peoples fun. Speeding is an offence because it endangers the lives of motorists and pedestrians. Speeding cars have very little time and space to slow down if a sudden hazard appears on the road. The faster you’re going, the more space you need to slow down.

In many jurisdictions, excessively exceeding speed limits results in serious traffic offence charges with much stiffer penalties. Besides being irresponsible, speeding places those around you in danger and accidents that result from speeding tend to be painful both physically and financially.

Reckless Driving

Car with smoke underneath

Driving a high-performance car and using its engine capacity to full potential is a very common human trait. It is important not to let your desire to enjoy the car’s performance translate into reckless manoeuvres on the road just because you might be able to pull them off. There are purpose-built motor racing tracks explicitly for this purpose where medical attention is on hand and there aren’t any slow-moving vehicles or pedestrians nearby. Only overtake slow-moving vehicles if you’re sure there is no oncoming traffic and always read road signs. These tips may seem obvious or straightforward, but the sheer amount of car accidents that result from reckless driving year after year in Kentucky shows that few motorists heed these basic safety rules.

Fatigue

That’s right, being sleepy! Nearly everyone has been on the road before without getting the right amount of shut-eye. This translates into slow reaction times, poorer overall judgement, and possible inattentiveness. Driving while drowsy is extremely dangerous, yet extremely common as we all lead busy lives. Get as much sleep as possible every night to avoid putting yourself at risk when hitting the road in the morning. Strangely enough, few people are aware of this risk. Early morning road rage can easily be attributed to a handful of people who should have gotten more rest before getting in their cars. If driving on the highway for long periods of time, don’t be opposed to the idea of parking for a nap somewhere if you think it might be necessary.

Protect Yourself

Doing everything in your power to ensure that you are abiding by car safety ethics doesn’t protect you from people who aren’t doing the same. Always drive defensively in the assumption that some or all of the drivers around you are seconds away from making a catastrophic mistake. Position yourself on the road in the most advantageous position where you remain in full control of the vehicle and can avoid road hazards in time.

In addition, having appropriate and adequate insurance in place is a vital part of protecting yourself on the road. If you’re covered then chances are an accident where you are not at fault will quickly fade into obscurity in your memory. However, insurance companies are notoriously difficult to get money from. For this reason, it’s advisable to get negotiations expertly handled by a proper Kentucky car accident lawyer. The terms of your insurance contract bind together what you’re entitled to, so make sure that you fully understand what you’re covered for before signing on to any insurance plan.

Car accident risks in Kentucky are present more or less constantly while on the road, it is simply a matter of properly mitigating those risks. Prudent road decisions, as well as comprehensive insurance, are the main mitigating factors when driving in Kentucky. Not that the state is notorious for bad drivers, it’s more to do with people believing that an accident just won’t happen to them specifically. A big part of accident mitigation is being aware of the risks, so rather be over- than under-prepared.

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