Skip to Content

What Are the Most Common Causes of Car Accidents?


What is the most common reason for a car accident? While it's known that texting and driving, distractions, speeding, drinking and driving, and other problems can result in accidents, there are specific causes that are more likely to happen in one place than another.

What are the most common cases for accidents in each state?

The Auto Insurance Center had the same question and compiled the data collected by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to find out the main cause of accidents in each state within the United States. It reported the top five states in each category, showing that the cause of accidents can vary significantly from one state to another. Between 2009 and 2013, several categories were developed to show the likelihood of accidents involving cars in the wrong lane, overcorrecting, improperly turning, and other factors.

Overall, the majority of accidents are caused by people failing to stay in their own lanes of traffic. The second most common was failing to yield. These types of accidents could be linked to drunk driving, distractions, and speeding, especially in hazardous conditions.

Careless and reckless driving was most commonly the cause of accidents in Montana, Florida, Louisiana, Colorado, and Arkansas, while New Mexico, South Carolina, Texas, Georgia, and Delaware suffered most from improper lane changes.

Rain causes the most accidents due to poor weather in states like Ohio and Pennsylvania, where a downpour could be combined with high winds, high waters on the roads, and potentially dangerous lightning and thunderstorms. Snow takes its toll in Wisconsin. Crosswinds were particularly dangerous in states such as Nevada and California.

Source: Business Insider, "This map shows what causes the most fatal car crashes in each US state," Matthew Speiser, accessed Feb. 04, 2016

Share To: