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Preventing car accidents that occur close to home

While many Missouri residents believe that those who are driving long distances are more likely to operate their vehicle while drowsy, that is actually not the case. In fact, most car accidents take place within about 25 miles from home. This could be due to the fact that drivers who are in familiar parts of town may be more likely to drive with their brains on auto-pilot.

Because driving in familiar places can be extremely dangerous, particularly after a long day of work or running around, drivers should be active in keeping themselves safe. This includes staying alert and ensuring that they buckle up. By staying alert and not letting their brains go on auto-pilot, they can be prepared to avoid accidents caused by another driver, an animal or pedestrian suddenly crossing the road or potential car equipment failure. Those who let themselves drift off while driving are simply not able to respond as quickly to these types of unpredictable elements.

Drivers should also be aware of when they are most vulnerable. There are usually more cars on the road during the afternoon and evening hours, increasing the risk of a car accident. For example, in 2013, 16 percent of all fatal accidents occurred between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. Thirty-one percent of fatal crashes occurred between 6 p.m. and midnight.

Even if drivers do their best to remain alert and drive safely at all times, they could still become involved in a car accident caused by another driver who was distracted by a cellphone, impaired by alcohol or otherwise negligent. People who have been injured in such a collision may want to meet with an attorney and see what kind of settlement the at-fault motorist's insurer might offer.

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