What Are the Most Common Causes of Fatal Accidents & Injuries?
Sadly, too many Tennessee accidents are deadly. Fatal accidents devastate families. A father, mother, son, or daughter is no longer there. No longer able to share their love, compassion, nurturing, and joy. The fact is, most fatal accidents are due to negligence. These include car and truck accidents, as well as a variety of others.
According to the Tennessee Department of Safety & Homeland Security, as of August 5, 2022, there have been 748 traffic fatalities. In 2021, a total of 1,327 people died in traffic accidents. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that 42, 915 people died nationwide in vehicle accidents in 2021. That number is more than a 10% increase from 2020 and is the largest number of deaths reported nationwide since 2005.
Some of the many reasons fatal car, truck, motorcycle, and other vehicle accidents happen include:
- Drunk driving. Drivers with a blood alcohol level of .08 or more are generally considered intoxicated. Drunk drivers have little or no ability to control their vehicles or exercise competent judgment.
- Distracted driving. Distracted drivers do not have their eyes on the road, their hands on the steering wheel, and their minds on traffic. Just a momentary distraction can cause a driver to slam his/her vehicle into another vehicle, causing a deadly crash. Some of the causes of distracted driving include texting while driving, using a smartphone, accessing the Internet, eating, driving while drowsy, adjusting an entertainment system, or paying attention to a pet.
- The NHTSA states that speeding killed 11,258 people in 2020.
Many head-on collisions and broadside collisions are also deadly.
Truck accidents are more likely to be deadlier than car accidents due to the mass and dimensions of tractor-trailers, semis, and other large trucks. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS):
- Most of the people who die in truck accidents are the occupants of passenger vehicles.
- Trucks generally weigh 20-30 times as much as passenger cars.
- “Loaded tractor-trailers require 20-40 percent more distance than cars to stop, and the discrepancy is greater on wet and slippery roads or with poorly maintained brakes.”
- Many drivers operate their vehicles while tired – often in violation of federal hours-of-service regulations.
Some of the common types of deadly truck accidents include underride accidents (where a small car slides under a large track), accidents due to blind spots, truck rollovers, truck jackknives, cargo spills, and wide-turn accidents.
Motorcycle accidents are often deadly because a motorcycle, unlike a car or truck, does not provide the rider with any protection. A motorcycle does not have a hood, trunk, roof, or side doors. When a Memphis motorcycle accident happens, the motorcycle riders usually either strike another vehicle, fall to the hard asphalt, or both.
Another common cause of fatal vehicle accidents is defective products. Defective engines, fuel lines, brakes, tires, windshield wipers, hydraulic systems, and gear shifters can cause a deadly car, truck, or motorcycle accident.
What are other common causes of fatal accidents?
Many people in Memphis die due to non-vehicle accidents. Some of the common causes of fatal accidents, other than vehicle accidents, include:
- Premises liability accidents. Land and property owners have a duty to ensure their premises are safe for people they should reasonably expect to use their property. Some of the reasons that people may suffer fatal injuries on someone else’s property are a slip and fall, a trip and fall, an elevator or escalator accident, or an attack due to negligent security. Children may die to due drowning accidents or falls from trampolines.
- Construction accidents. Contractors, drivers, and pedestrians may be killed if a construction company or others fail to exercise proper precautions on a worksite. Electric accidents, falling objects, and vehicle accidents are just a few of the accidents that cause a loved one to die.
- Product liability accidents. Manufacturers can be held liable if defective electronic products, tools, heaters, drugs, medical devices, or other products cause the death of a loved one.
- Medical malpractice. Physicians and other healthcare providers owe a duty of competent care to their patients. Some of the causes of patient deaths include improper diagnosis, a delayed diagnosis, failure to order the correct diagnostic tests, mistakes during surgery, medication errors, and mistakes during the delivery of a baby.
- Nursing home abuse. Senior citizens and their families trust that nursing homes will take every reasonable precaution to protect their safety. Some of the causes of nursing home deaths include physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, and neglect. Common types of abuse and neglect include failing to give a resident his/her medications, failing to treat bedsores and other health disorders, not providing the proper nutrition for a resident, physical attacks, isolation, and other causes.
- Maritime accidents. Our Memphis wrongful death lawyers also represent the families of victims who die in boating and other types of watercraft and waterway accidents.
What is a Memphis wrongful death claim?
After an individual loses their life due to another’s negligence, the immediate family members and anyone who was dependent on the decedent generally have the right to file a wrongful death claim. The damages in wrongful death cases in Memphis include the wages and benefits the decedent would have earned, funeral and burial costs, the loss of support and companionship the decedent would have provided the family members, and other damages.
At Bailey & Greer, PLLC, our Memphis and Jackson wrongful death attorneys represent the families of drivers, passengers, pedestrians, bicycle riders, workers, patients, and anyone else who dies due to the negligence or fault of others. We begin each wrongful death claim by respecting your need to mourn for your loved one. Our lawyers work diligently and persuasively to show how the deadly accident happened, why it should have been prevented, and how the death of your loved one has affected you and your family, financially and emotionally.
To schedule a free consultation, please call us at 901-475-7434 or complete our contact form. We have been fighting for personal injury victims including the families of deadly accident victims for more than 35 years.
As founder of Bailey & Greer, R. Sadler Bailey has battled his fair share of insurance giants and wrongdoers and has achieved numerous multimillion-dollar results for the victims of catastrophic injuries and their families. What’s more, he has been involved in more than 40 appellate court decisions affecting Tennessee personal injury law, including many landmark appearances before the Tennessee Supreme Court.
Read more about R. Sadler Bailey