Avoiding Automobile Accidents
The other day when I was on my way back to my apartment complex from running an errand, my boyfriend (who had just arrived at the apartment complex minutes before) called to warn me that there had been a major accident right in front of the main entrance to our apartment complex. Therefore, he advised me to take an alternate route to gain access to the apartment complex. Sure enough, when I arrived at our apartments, I could see the flashing lights of several different police cars and traffic that had backed up- some of which was being re-routed elsewhere. I quickly made my turn and avoided the entire thing. Later on that night, when we left our apartment to go out to dinner, I could see the remnants of the clean up that had been performed by the local fire department. There was sand over oil and fluid spills and a few pieces of broken glass. I only hoped that those who had been involved in the car accident were ok.
Two days ago, I was sitting at a red light at a busy intersection in the area that I live.
I saw that the light had turned red for the people who were traveling across the lane in front of me. When the light turned yellow and then red, a car packed full with what looked like family members slowed down for the red light and came to a complete stop. Not even two seconds later, a minivan carrying several people screeched to a stop, but not before hitting the car in front of it. It was clear that one of two things had happened. Either the person driving the minivan thought that the car in front of them was going to try to run the light, OR, the person driving the minivan was simply not paying attention. Based on what I was able to witness, I am willing to bet that it was a little bit of both.
One way to avoid car accidents is to leave yourself enough room between the vehicle in front of you. Why is this? Well, let’s say that you are stopped at an intersection and your front bumper is practically touching the bumper of the car in front of you. Now, let’s say that you notice a car approaching you from behind that is speeding. You can tell that they are not going to have enough time or space to slow down, and you anticipate that they will hit your car if you do nothing but sit there. Now, if you had given yourself enough room between you and the car in front of you, you would be able to move your car out the way or perform an evasive movement so that you don’t get struck. However, what do most people do? They tailgate the person in front of them like crazy whether they are in a stopped position or moving. Do you think that this is the smart thing to do?
Institute researchers compared the fatal crash experience of antilock-equipped motorcycles against their nonantilock counterparts during 2003-08. The main finding is that motorcycles with antilocks versus without are 37 percent less likely to be in fatal crashes per 10000 registered vehicle years. Bolstering this finding is a separate analysis by the Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI), an affiliate of the Insurance Institute. HLDI analyzed insurance claims filed for crash damage to motorcycles. Bike models with antilocks have 22 percent fewer claims for crash damage per insured vehicle year (a vehicle year is 1 vehicle insured for 1 year, 2 insured for 6 months, etc.) than the same models without antilocks. The results update earlier studies by the Institute and HLDI published in 2008. In 2009 the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced that it was looking at the issue in light of the Institutes earlier study but stated that an additional year of data and additional analyses are needed to determine the statistical significance of the results. www.ultimatemotorcycling.com
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