Death by Driving

Typical Car Accident

Most car accidents are caused by driver distraction.
Most car accidents are caused by driver distraction. | Source

Learn How to Drive

As of 5/30/2013, the death toll on Texas roadways was over 1,100 people! Every time you get in your car, you are risking death and dismemberment by driving. It could be you are a lousy driver or it could be the other guy is a lousy driver. The safest thing you can do to prevent accidents, whether you are 8 or 80, is to get educated.

One of the best way to avoid becoming a statistic is to learn how to drive!

According to Online Texas Defensive Driving Course, it is only $25 to take defensive driving classes that will save your life and quite possibly the lives of others. This course can be done in the privacy and comfort of your own home.

Not only can you learn to drive much better, but there are other benefits of taking driving courses.

  • If you have received a ticket, a driving course will help to dismiss the ticket.
  • Driving courses decrease your insurance premiums and keep points off of your driving record.
  • You will become a much better driver!

If you are unable to take an online driving course, your local library can help you find a classroom driving course near you. If all else fails, get some books on how to drive and read them!

Stop, Look and Listen!

Learn the rules of the road!
Learn the rules of the road! | Source

Causes of Car Accidents

Since the first auto accident fatality in 1896, 25 million people have died via auto related accidents. This is according to the World Health Organization (WHO). WHO says that over a million people die on the roads of the world each year and the number is increasing. What are the major causes of auto accidents?

  1. Distraction - Whatever you are doing other than concentrating on operating your automobile is a distraction. Do not eat, smoke, drink, talk on the phone, text, look at scenery, look at other wrecks or even listen to music! It was recently reported that a teen, driving a car for the very first (and last) time, was texting when she had a fatal crash. We don't expect airline pilots to be distracted when they drive a plane, why do people not pay attention when driving?
  2. Sleeping behind the wheel - being fatigued is the second most common cause of auto related accidents. Just say no to driving when you are tired.
  3. Driving under the influence of mind altering substances - Seriously? People still drink and drive. They smoke pot and drive. They take allergy medicines and drive. They do illegal drugs and drive. It would be nice if people would just say NO! What is so important that you can't stay home and drink? If your mind is not clear, you may injure or kill someone.
  4. Speeding - Here is where education can play the largest part in helping people learn to control their vehicles. There is no excuse for speeding. There may be times when you need to actually get somewhere in a hurry, but speeding isn't going to actually get you there faster and it may slow you down considerably if you have an accident. Driving a car requires only a minimum comprehension of physics. Big car + Speed = Danger.
  5. Angry drivers - People that cannot control their emotions need to refrain from driving. Being angry, or sad, or any of other overly emotional states will affect your ability to control your automobile. If you kill someone while in an angry mood, you can never take it back. You can never say you are sorry.
  6. Inability to control a car due to weather conditions - Every time it floods, someone gets swept away from the road and drowns. It happens every time! People leave their pets and even their children in hot cars. This is murder. People try to drive in inclement weather and pay with their lives. Learn to drive for road conditions and save lives.

Just knowing the causes for accidents will help to prevent them. Learn what to do in each of the above situations and you will go a long way toward keeping yourself and your loved ones safe while driving.

Austin, Texas

Austin, Texas
Austin, Texas | Source

Worst Intersections in Austin, Texas - Every town has them!

show route and directions
A markerRiverside Drive & Pleasant Valley Austin, Tx -
Pleasant Valley, Austin, TX, USA
[get directions]

B markerLamar blvd, Parmer Lane Austin, tx -
North Lamar Boulevard, Austin, TX, USA
[get directions]

C markerSlaughter Lane and Manchaca -
West Slaughter Lane & Manchaca Road, Austin, TX 78748, USA
[get directions]

D markerI-35 and Oltorf -
Interstate 35, Austin, TX, USA
[get directions]

E markerBell Blvd. & Cypress Creek -
South Bell Boulevard & Cypress Creek Road, Cedar Park, TX 78613, USA
[get directions]

F markerWhitestone Blvd. & Hwy 183A -
U.S. 183 & East Whitestone Boulevard, Cedar Park, TX 78613, USA
[get directions]

G markerLamar Blvd. & Koenig Lane -
North Lamar Boulevard & West Koenig Lane, Austin, TX 78752, USA
[get directions]

Are you a safe driver?

Do you drive defensively?

  • Always
  • Sometimes
  • Never, I drive aggresively
  • How can I defend myself against other drivers?
See results without voting

Hard to watch video - do these people really have driving licenses?

© 2013 Austinstar

More by this Author


Comments 32 comments

billybuc profile image

billybuc 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

There really are some idiots on the road. I swear, stopping at stop signs is completely ignored here in Olympia...people slow down but they do not stop.....when did this idiocy begin? There weren't this many bad drivers twenty years ago, were there?


mary615 profile image

mary615 3 years ago from Florida

I watched that video and it was very scary!!! I live in a community where half the people do not know how to drive! I hate to have to go out on the road here just to shop. My 17 year old son still has not driver's license and he is in NO rush to get it...he is just scared to drive a car around here.

I wrote a Hub about distracted drivers. I invite you to read mine and if you will permit me, I'd like to link my Hub with this one.

Voted this UP, and shared.


Stephanie Henkel profile image

Stephanie Henkel 3 years ago from USA

Oh, my gosh! That video is enough to make you fear getting into a car! It never ceases to amaze me that more people don't die in traffic accidents!

In our travels we've seen some crazy things that other people do. Onc mind-boggling incident happened as we followed a guy on a motorcycle down the highway. Going about 45 mph, he suddenly stood up on his pedals and reached in his back pocket for his cell phone. Then drove one handed while he apparently read and possibly answered a text! Needless to say, we stayed WAY back away from him!


GusTheRedneck profile image

GusTheRedneck 3 years ago from USA

Howdy Lela (AustinStar) -

(Sure enough - HEAVY on the Star, right?)

I have advised my friends and my kids about the location of their homes - never live in a house that is in the middle of the "T" where one street links to another one. I have seen so many accidents in which an automobile is driven at some speed up (or down, as it may be) the "I" part of the T and winds up in someone's living room or bedroom. One like that happened right across the street from where we live. The car smashed the brick wall down. The driver, probably drunk or on dope, calmly put his messed-up car in reversed and backed out of the house. He did not get too far, but the house was really messed up.

Gus :-)))


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 3 years ago from Somewhere in the universe Author

Hi billybuc - yep, stopping seems to be some kind of option these days. I know cops who will write tickets if don't stop completely BEHIND the stop sign. It's called encroachment if your car is passed the sign before you stop. You're supposed to stop behind the sign for two seconds, then slowly pull ahead until it is safe. Your car's wheels must be in a full stop too. No "rolling stops".

Hi Mary - I went and found your hub and I have now linked to it. Yes, please feel free to link to any hubs that will help your own hub. I've also read a report that young people do not seem to be in a rush to learn to drive these days. I suppose it's because so many of their friends die in car accidents.

Hi Stephanie - I was riding in a car in Houston once and someone actually shot out the back window. Fortunately, no one was hurt, but it's a sad thing these days that driving is so dangerous. Driving was always one of my true joys.

Hi Gus - I'll never understand why the Dept. of Public Safety will issue driver licenses to just about anyone. I say, everyone must take a driver safety course every year, and they must pass it before getting a license or renewal. That's in addition to the stupid eye test which only eliminates blind people. Thank goodness they keep those people off the road!


mary615 profile image

mary615 3 years ago from Florida

Thanks, I think our two Hubs will compliment each other.


Alphadogg16 profile image

Alphadogg16 3 years ago from Texas

There are always going to be morons behind the wheel, and until people start getting held accountable for their actions, it will never end. I know a couple of people now with 3-4 DWI's and are still driving. We wait until the kill someone to do something about it?? Nobody is accountable anymore.


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 3 years ago from Somewhere in the universe Author

That is very true. No one wants to take on responsibility when the lawyers will just sue them for it.

But educating drivers is the only way to help with all the deaths by driving. We must educate and be willing to be educated.

I know, pretty hopeless.


christopheranton profile image

christopheranton 3 years ago from Gillingham Kent. United Kingdom

I don't drive but one of the many dangerous things I see drivers do is not indicating. This can be very serious, when you are traversing a crossroad and some idiot turns right into you, without signalling his intentions. I've watched cars for ages and about seventy percent of drivers never signal.


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 3 years ago from Somewhere in the universe Author

People think they are protected by their cars. They really should be thinking that their car is a dangerous weapon!

I don't know how to reach drivers. They refuse to listen or do what's right. I always signal! People walking along do not know you are going to turn. Just be courteous! That's really all it takes.


GusTheRedneck profile image

GusTheRedneck 3 years ago from USA

Hello again, Lela (AustinStar) -

When your latest comment hit the screen here this morning, it got me to remembering how folks communicated their driving plans to others on the road back when the cars did not have electrical turn signals. You and many others may be too young to remember how those went...

Right turn - arm out the window with the lower arm and hand pointing up; Left turn - arm out the window with the lower arm and hand pointing left; Stopping - arm out the window with the lower arm and hand pointing down.

I haven't thought about those signals for many, many years, but I do recall how important they seemed to me back when I got my first driving permits...

Gus :-)))


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 3 years ago from Somewhere in the universe Author

I do remember those turn signals. They tried to move them to bicycle riders too. I actually did see a motorcyclist the other day using a left turn arm signal.

You're right, folks today would have no clue what this meant. I'll be so glad when everyone is riding in a computerized car that knows how to avoid all other cars on the road. Just get in and tell it where you want to go and text away!


someonewhoknows profile image

someonewhoknows 3 years ago from south and west of canada,north of ohio

In my state you have to give a sworn statement to the best of your knowledge that you aren't in a medical condition that could cause you to lose consciousness while driving due to age & or health related concerns before you can renew your drivers license.


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 3 years ago from Somewhere in the universe Author

Yea, no one is going to lie about that! It's a sworn statement, right?

As the saying goes, "You can't fix Stupid".


drbj profile image

drbj 3 years ago from south Florida

OMG, OMG, OMG - that IS a scary video, Lela. I may not drive again for another ten or twenty ... minutes. Speeding, distraction and not knowing where the hell you are seem to be the main causes for traffic accidents in south Florida. Half the drivers are tourists who do not know where they are going, and the other half never took driving lessons in their home country. You have to be very aware and also blessed to survive.


Minnetonka Twin profile image

Minnetonka Twin 3 years ago from Minnesota

Oh wow, that is tough to watch. Thanks for reminding us to stay safe on the road. I agree that knowing what causes accidents can help us try to avoid them. It seems like drivers are getting more and more distracted these days and it scares the heck out of me. I see tons of people on on cell phones, texting etc.. Common sense people~when your driving you need to drive~not do everything else.


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 3 years ago from Somewhere in the universe Author

drbj, it was like that on Maui too. When I lived there, the tourists had no clues as to where they were or how to get there. They would brake for pinneapples!

MT - I feel that whenever I get out on the road, it's 50/50 that I'm going to make it back home again. I feel like yelling, "Just shut up and DRIVE, people"!


Genna East profile image

Genna East 3 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

My Dad taught me how to drive. He always said, “Drive defensively…expect the unexpected.”

With people now texting while driving (are they OUT of their minds?), and others chatting endlessly on cell phones, it seems that technology has upped the ante regarding the types of dangers on the road. What’s next – speed faxing?

Your hub is excellent in that it teaches from both an informed and common sense perspective. This should be must-reading for all new (and current) drivers.


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 3 years ago from Somewhere in the universe Author

Anything that makes people pay attention. Maybe we should put automatic face slappers for drivers that text or take their eyes off the road. I'm all for it.


Tammy L profile image

Tammy L 3 years ago from Jacksonville, Texas

Most people don't know the hand signals bicyclists are supposed to use. They don't even know that those same hand signals are for drivers as well. Someone I knew used the hand signals when her car's signals weren't working. I thought at least 3 minutes of the video was footage of Dallas freeways. Someone once asked me if I was scared of the high freeway ramps in Dallas. I told him I wasn't scared of the freeways themselves. It was the morons that are on them that frighten me.


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 3 years ago from Somewhere in the universe Author

The freeways are actually quite good and if no one else is using the road, it's really, really safe! But just add one bad driver and BAM! your odds of death by driving go up and up.


platinumOwl4 profile image

platinumOwl4 3 years ago

Great article, I did not know the WHO had statistics on the first auto fatality. Interesting.


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 3 years ago from Somewhere in the universe Author

Amazing isn't it?


carol7777 profile image

carol7777 3 years ago from Arizona

Obviously there is some really good advice here. I have known people who are impaired with alcohol and have never been caught. Lets hope they don't kill anyone. Great hu and should be publicized all over the net.


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 3 years ago from Somewhere in the universe Author

Thank you Carol. It's a cause I believe strongly about. There are way too many people dying on what should be safe roads. It's all because of uneducated drivers and impaired drivers.

Let's all remember that a 2,000 pound car is a missile that can truly do a lifetime of damage to ourselves and others.


Kalmiya profile image

Kalmiya 3 years ago from North America

I'm too scared to even watch the video! I live in a mid-size town in southern Ontario and for the better part people are respectful drivers here but sometimes the idiots come out and one wonders about the condition of their thinking processes. Thanks for bringing up this issue Austinstar.


Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 3 years ago

Useful hub. There are a lot of lousy drivers out there. What really blows my mind these days is the number of people I see texting or looking at their phones. I can just see them looking down and then occasionally glancing up at the road. It is terrifying to me because they are all accidents waiting to happen.


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 3 years ago from Somewhere in the universe Author

Too bad there isn't an 'app' for driving that is smarter than the driver!


rls8994 profile image

rls8994 3 years ago from Mississippi

Great hub with a lot of useful information. That video was so scary. I have seen a lot of bad driving! I get so aggravated when I drive by someone and they have their head down texting. They are putting everyone around them in danger of an accident. Voted up and interesting!


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 3 years ago from Somewhere in the universe Author

It amazes me that so many people die from driving and very little is done about it. We always have one or two deaths on the news, but they just kind of skim through it. Now, if they had been shot to death at a McDonalds, they would probably quarantine the whole block.


Porshadoxus profile image

Porshadoxus 2 years ago from the straight and narrow way

I'm curious about the disconnect between your article's text, which focuses mostly on the USA, especially Texas, and the video you selected, which shows accidents almost exclusively in Eastern Europe or Russia.

Anyway...

Having lived in 10 US states and 2 other countries (and driven in most of them), I've observed a difference in driving styles dependent upon where the driver was trained. I was trained to drive in Pennsylvania, over two decades ago. Most folks were polite and defensive drivers.

Within the last decade I spent several years in Massachusetts. Never have I encountered such rudeness and selfishness behind the wheel. Seems the Mass. drivers are taught to think of themselves first, at the expense of smooth traffic flow or lowering the risk of accidents.

Highway etiquette in New York state also needs to change. The attitude seems to be that if I believe that I'm going to be on the road longer than you, I can drive as slow as I want in the passing lane.

If the video you selected is indicative of Russia, I'd recommend they open their first driving school right away!


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 2 years ago from Somewhere in the universe Author

I think it might be harder to put together a video like that in the USA. And their would be privacy issues, that the Russians don't much care about. Or because it's international, they don't have a legal way to stop it.

But I do think American drivers are just as bad.

I'll agree that Mass drivers are bad, but have you ever been to Dallas or Houston? Every big city is bad these days.

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