How to Avoid Serious Accidents During Rush Hour Traffic - Diamond and Diamond Lawyers
  • Monday, 15 May 2017

How to Avoid Serious Accidents During Rush Hour Traffic

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According news reports citing a recent study of the worst traffic in Canada, Toronto motorists spend up to 45 hours a year on average stuck in rush hour traffic during their daily commutes. Statistics compiled by Transport Canadaand others might suggest a link between traffic congestion and some of the almost 150,000 injury-causing traffic accidents in 2014, the last year for which accident data is available.

Taking a closer look at traffic accidents to find a cause

More than 25 percent of accidents throughout Canada were rear end collisions. A close second were accidents at intersections and those involving turning vehicles that made up almost 24 percent of all accidents. Moving vehicles crashing into parked cars was a distant third at just under 14 percent.

Identifying the leading causes of traffic accidents

Based upon the types of accidents occurring on roads and highways throughout Ontario and other parts of the country, the following contributing factors stand out:

  • Distracted driving: Anything diverting a driver’s attention from maintaining control of the vehicle or observing others using the roadways is a distraction. Texting while driving, talking on a cellphone, engaging in a conversation with a passenger, eating or programing a vehicle’s GPS can distract a driver and cause an accident.
  • Driver fatigue: Someone who is tired and fatigued and stuck in rush hour traffic poses a danger to other drivers. The drowsy, sluggish and slow-to-react driver could have difficulty maintaining control of a vehicle or could misjudge or fail to react to changing traffic conditions and slam into the rear of a stopping or slowing car or truck.
  • Driving under the influence: Stopping off for a couple of drinks on the way home from work can result in a driver’s abilities to operate his or her vehicle being impaired. Although criminal laws exist to punish individuals who drink and drive, impaired judgment and reflexes are dangerous in the congestion of rush hour traffic.
  • Failure to obey stop signs and traffic lights: Drivers who are in a hurry can become frustrated at the slow pace caused by traffic congestion and be tempted to ignore traffic signals and other controls at intersections. This can lead to deadly collisions with vehicles lawfully turning or otherwise in an intersection.
  • Driver aggression: Being stuck in traffic is frustrating, but drivers who allow their frustrations to turn into aggressive behaviour toward others on the road pose a danger to everyone. Frequent and unsafe lane changes, driving faster than is safe for the road and traffic conditions, tailgating and failing to yield are aggressive behaviours that frequently cause accidents.
  • Failing to yield to pedestrians: Even the most careful driver might look for ways to make up for time lost while stuck in bumper-to-bumper rush hour traffic, by failing to yield to pedestrians. A change in the law in Ontario went into effect last year requiring drivers at a designated crossover to yield the entire roadway until the pedestrian has reached the opposite sidewalk. Violators can be fined and receive 3 demerit points.

Motorists engaging in any of these behaviours regardless of the traffic conditions increase their risk of being involved in a collision with another motor vehicle. When drivers act irresponsibly during rush hour, they increase the likelihood of causing injury to others.

Experienced Ontario personal injury lawyers fight for the rights of victims

The experienced personal injury lawyers at Diamond and Diamond have offices located throughout Ontario to provide trusted legal advice and skilled representation to individuals injured in accidents in rush hour traffic. Contact our 24/7 personal injury hotline at 1-800-567-HURT or visit our website to speak to someone from our team. The consultation and case evaluation are free.

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