Limo drivers should be aware that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports the most common accident types on America’s streets and highways are rear-end accidents, followed by sideswipes, turning collisions, collisions with animals and run-off-road accidents. According to www.SmartMotorist.com, over 95% of all traffic accidents are caused by five specific driving behaviors:
- Fatigue: More than 10,000 accidents in the U.S. are caused by fatigue each year. Drowsy or sleeping drivers cause more than 1,500 deaths and an estimated 40,000 injuries;
- Driver Distraction: Drivers can be distracted by any number of things going on around them, including eating, talking with passengers, adjusting the radio or CD player, and watching other traffic or accidents. It is four times more likely that drivers talking or texting on cell phones will be involved in a traffic accident than drivers not using a phone;
- Aggressive Driving: Aggressive drivers force their way through roadways by using maneuvers which are dangerous to other motorists and in violation of traffic laws. Aggressive driving is often the cause of highway sideswipe accidents;
- Drunk Driving: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that every day, a drunk driver causes 36 deaths and about 700 injuries. Drunk driving on average, accounts for more than one-third of the total number of fatal accidents each year; and
- Speed: The faster a driver travels over the speed limit, the greater the chances are that driver will be involved in an accident. Speeding reduces a driver’s control over the vehicle, limits the ability to evaluate surroundings and greatly reduces reaction time and the ability to stop the vehicle quickly.
Any one of these driving behaviors is dangerous and can be deadly, and they are all preventable behaviors. Over 30,000 people are killed in crashes each year in the United States and, besides the toll on victims’ families and friends, the total accounts for
an estimated $41 billion in medical and work-loss costs. The United Nations launched a Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020 in May, 2011. The stated goal is to stabilize and then reduce the forecast level of road traffic fatalities around the world by increasing activities conducted at the national, regional and global levels. The tragic
and alarming statistics of the death and destruction caused by traffic accidents each year needs to be addressed. And as a professional limo driver, you and your limo insurance company can take the initiative in helping to make the roads a safer place for everyone.