Why More Drivers Have Accidents Close to Home

Posted on behalf of Pfeifer Morgan & Stesiak

on November 16, 2020

. Updated on March 23, 2022


car driving on a foggy nightYou may have heard people say that more accidents happen closer to home, but is that just a saying or is it a fact? If it is true, how can you help to prevent you and your loved ones from becoming a statistic?

Pfeifer, Morgan & Stesiak discuss this decades-old saying and what you should know to protect yourself and others on the road.

If you are injured in a car accident due to the negligence of another driver, our knowledgeable South Bend car accident lawyers are ready to provide legal assistance and help you obtain the compensation you need. Our free consultation is a great way to get answers to your legal questions in a non-stressful way, since there is no obligation to hire our services.

Is the Statistic Fact or Fiction?

Progressive Insurance conducted the first survey to research where most accidents may happen. Although only 11,000 drivers were included in the study, the outcome was still astonishing. Findings revealed that 52 percent of motorists had an accident within five minutes of their homes and 77 percent had accidents within 15 miles of where they lived. Although this study occurred in 2001, newer research continues to support the original claim.

Why Do Accidents Happen Closer to Home?

Research shows experienced drivers may be more vulnerable to an accident near home because they have been driving the route a long time and may pay less attention. Newer drivers, however, may remain alert to their surroundings – even in familiar places.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), reported recently that not only do more accidents occur within a short distance of home, but they are often more serious. The NHTSA says that often when people are a short distance from home, they may not bother to buckle up, leaving them more vulnerable to the possibility of serious or fatal injuries if they are involved in a collision.

Familiarity Can Lead to Carelessness

Another reason why accidents happen closer to home is that drivers are so familiar with the commute that they may “zone out” or go into “auto-drive” mode. This is extremely dangerous and increases your risk of having an accident. Other factors that may increase your chances of a car crash close to home include:

  • Time of day: Late night driving raises the risk of a crash due to fatigue or distraction
  • Unexpected elements: A late-night pedestrian, animal darting into the road, bad weather or an issue with your car
  • Impaired driving: Whether due to alcohol or drugs, driving impaired impedes your ability to drive safely

What many drivers may not realize is that approximately a third of all fatal traffic accidents occur after 6 p.m. and before midnight. Avoiding driving in the late night or early morning hours whenever possible can help reduce the risk of a car crash, but driving defensively is still the best strategy.

How Can You Avoid Having an Accident?

Whether near home or on a two-day road trip, always buckle up. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety recently reported that nearly half of the accident victims who died in a car accident were not wearing their seat belt.

Do not drive if you do not feel alert. If you are tired, have been drinking or are taking a prescription drug, it is best to err on the side of caution and avoid getting behind the wheel.

Following these and other safe driving laws can help you avoid unnecessary accidents that could cost you a lot of money as well as serious harm.

Other safety measures you can take include:

  • Staying alert and avoiding distractions, like using your phone or eating while driving
  • Being mindful of the speed limit
  • Checking frequently for pedestrians or cyclists who may be hard to see and not paying attention

What Should You Do If An Accident Happens?

If you are involved in an accident near your home or elsewhere because of another driver’s negligence, we strongly recommend that you remain calm and contact 9-1-1 for assistance. If the accident occurred near your home, calling a family member may provide comfort while you wait for the police to arrive.

Other steps that you should take to protect yourself and a potential claim:

  • Check yourself and any passengers for injuries – do not move anyone unless it is necessary
  • If you can do so without risking your safety or the safety of others, photograph the scene, road debris, vehicle damage and other evidence that may be helpful to establish fault
  • Get information from other drivers and wait for the police to arrive
  • Protect your health and seek immediate medical attention, even if you do not feel pain or see evidence of an injury

Learn How Our Attorneys May Be Able to Provide Legal Help

At Pfeifer, Morgan & Stesiak, we have years of experience handling car accident claims throughout Indiana. We have fought to hold at-fault parties accountable and recovered millions in compensation on behalf of our injured clients.

While no one can guarantee an outcome, statistically, injured victims who hire legal representation often recover larger settlements than those who do not. Find out whether you may have grounds to pursue compensation for your losses by contacting our firm today.

We offer a free consultation that carries no obligation to hire our services. If we take your case, there are also no costs to pay up front or while we represent you. We do not get paid until the legal case concludes, and only if we first recover compensation on your behalf.

Our firm is ready to provide the legal help you need. Call (844) 678-1800 today.

Pfeifer, Morgan & Stesiak

Serious Attorneys for Serious Cases