As a nation, we’ve seen some truly impressive improvements in road safety attitudes and awareness over the last four decades. The proof is right there in the statistics – as an example, annual road deaths have fallen from 3,798 back in 1970 to 1,206 in 2015. It’s not all good news though, economists still put the annual cost of road accidents in Australia at an eye-watering $27 billion per annum.
As leading Sydney accident lawyers, we deal with the consequences of much of this carnage every day and know more than most that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure – in our long experience of dealing with motor vehicle accident claims, we’ve found that many of these incidents are eminently avoidable in hindsight.
In this piece, we’ll step through three common sense tips for steering clear of the courts altogether by putting safety first at all times.
1. Check Your Speed
Though the pace of modern life shows no sign of slowing, there’s no reason to carry that urgency out onto the streets. Speeding is reckoned to be a factor in up to a third of Australian road fatalities and over 4,000 people are seriously injured in speed-related accidents every year. Simply staying within the speed limit significantly reduces your chances of joining that unhappy number.
In terms of both stopping distances and reaction times, excess speed massively increases your risk of being involved in an accident, and the faster you’re going, the worse that accident is likely to be. As an example, your risk of being involved in a fatal car crash doubles with every extra 5km/hr over 60km/hr.
The latest generation of auto safety technology provides more than enough warning of when you’re getting close to the limit – there’s simply no excuse these days for taking the risk.
2. Ditch the Distractions
Driving is such a natural part of most people’s daily routines that it’s all too easy to forget the stakes that are potentially involved. Minor distractions that can be merely irritating in other contexts morph into life-threatening scenarios when you’re on the road.
The main culprit – and the one that’s easiest to control – is use of mobile devices. Recent studies indicate that a staggering 33% of young Australian drivers admitted to using Facebook while behind the wheel.
The solution here is simple, ditch the devices while driving. Checking that social media update on the move simply isn’t worth a trip to the courts, emergency room or both.
3. Buckle Up
Proper use of seatbelts for drivers and passengers should be an absolute no-brainer at this stage, but there’s still a significant minority of drivers who refuse to get on board and risk both their own lives and those of others.
In New South Wales alone, there are more than 300 people injured and 50 killed per annum as a result of not buckling up. Make sure you’re following the letter of the law and that both you and your passengers are protected at all times.
In our role as leading motor vehicle accident claims lawyers, we’ve dealt with a huge range of cases relating to auto accidents and delivered the best possible result for literally thousands of clients. If you’ve suffered injuries through no fault of your own in a car accident, our team of compensation specialists are ready to advise you on the best options for seeking redress.
All our car accident lawyers work on a strict no-win, no-fee basis and we’re happy to discuss your potential case in detail during an entirely free initial consultation. Please don’t hesitate to contact us today to work out the next steps in making your claim.