First Personal Injury

First Personal Injury

February 09, 2010 03:00 ET

Driver Distractions Key Cause of Road Accidents?

MANCHESTER, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwire - Feb. 9, 2010) - Many people assume that if they are good drivers they won't be involved in an accident. But that isn't necessarily true.

"There is no doubt that there are plenty of things that can distract us when we are driving. While we should certainly not be using mobile phones or other similar devices when we are on the road, these aren't the only distractions that can pose a threat," says Accident Claims Solicitor Michael Jefferies of First Personal Injury.

Research into the 230,905 road accidents in the UK in 2008 showed that the top distractions causing road accidents included talking on a mobile phone, eating, changing the radio station, shaving or applying makeup, checking out an accident and waving to pedestrians. 80% of accidents are caused by driver error and distraction.

Michael adds: "You can never be sure about what other drivers will do, which is why preventative measures are important. Such measures include keeping your distance from other vehicles, keeping your speed down and staying alert to what is happening all around you.

Although young people tend to have good reaction times, disproportionately more young male drivers feature in road accidents, with researchers observing that many exhibit behaviors and attitudes to risk that can place them in more hazardous situations than other road users. When you first pass your test and start driving on your own you make a conscious effort to remember everything you have been taught. Mirror, signal, manoeuvre will be running through your head with every move you make. But after a while you start to get more relaxed in your driving – and that can lead to an accident if you are not careful.

That's why it is a good idea to go on driving refresher courses every now and again, just to make sure you aren't slipping into bad habits. Sadly, not many drivers do this; yet it is quite possible that if more of us did make the effort to brush up on our skills there would be fewer accidents on the road than there are at present. 

You can certainly reduce your chances of having an accident while driving – whether it is your fault or someone else's – by thinking ahead. The more observant you are about your surroundings the less likely it is that you will make a mistake or fail to notice someone else having problems – either of which could cause an accident.

For example if you are out in the countryside you might think that you are safer away from all the traffic. But there are a myriad of hazards awaiting you – a tractor coming out of a field and leaving mud all over the road can increase your chances of skidding if you aren't paying proper attention, or a farm animal wandering on the road, just around a blind bend for example.

Finally, if you are unlucky enough to be involved in an accident that isn't your fault and you are injured, make sure you see a doctor as soon as possible. If anyone has suffered as a result of an accident that was not their fault or was caused by someone else's negligence they may be able to make an accident claim. In the first instance telephone First Personal Injury for advice on making a claim for compensation on 0800 014 1629 or complete one of our online accident claim forms at

First Personal Injury operates on a no win no fee** basis which means you do not pay for our legal services whether you win or lose and you will receive 100% of the compensation awarded to you."

About First Personal Injury

First Personal Injury is a trading name of Jefferies LLP one of the UK's leading personal injury law firms. Jefferies LLP has over 16 years experience in personal injury accident claims. They have won justice and personal injury compensation for tens of thousands of people all over the country from its base in Altrincham, South Manchester. The firm deals with all levels of personal injury claims - from minor to catastrophic.

** Please note - In limited circumstances, fees may be charged when your claim is not successful. These specific limited circumstances are set out in our No Win No Fee Agreement. In addition, if you fail to attend a medical appointment arranged for you, the doctor may charge a non-attendance fee.

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