Car accident on side of the highway

Top Causes of Highway Accidents in New Jersey

When having to navigate highways in our state, it might feel a bit like bumper cars sometimes. Knowing some of the things that lead to crashes can help one avoid collisions. When you observe some of these situations, you might be able to take evasive action. 

A New Jersey car accident attorney could help you with your personal injury claim if you got hurt in a crash that was someone else’s fault. Here are some of the top causes of highway accidents in New Jersey:


Speeding can mean either exceeding the posted speed limit or driving too fast for the conditions, even if not driving faster than the speed limit. When the weather creates challenging conditions, drivers have a duty to slow down so that they can drive safely.

In both situations, driving too fast can cause one to lose control of the vehicle and collide with another car or pedestrian or have a one-car accident. Having more time to steer around a situation or come to a stop can mean the difference between a crash or an uneventful drive.

Driving or Walking Under the Influence of Alcohol and Other Drugs

Consuming alcohol or other drugs can affect processing and reaction time for drivers and pedestrians. An intoxicated pedestrian can stumble and fall into the path of a moving vehicle. Drunk drivers pose a danger on the roads because alcohol impairment adversely impairs driving ability. By the time a drunk driver notices a red light, for example, he might already be in the intersection.

Distracted Driving

A lack of focus on the act of driving has always been a problem, but the uptick of built-in gadgets in cars and trucks and the high number of cell phones have increased this dangerous issue. Distracted driving can take any one or more of these three forms:

  • Attention focused on something else. Even seemingly harmless daydreaming behind the wheel can divert the driver’s attention away from driving and lead to an accident. For example, when a person passes the time by thinking about all the things they would do if they won the lottery, they might not notice signs that warn about upcoming road construction.
  • Not holding the steering wheel. Many crashes happen when the driver reaches for a dropped object, adjusts the car stereo, or tries to grab something from the back seat. Taking one’s hands off the wheel is particularly dangerous because of how many feet the car can travel after the driver sees an urgent situation and tries to grasp the wheel again.
  • Looking away from the road. When we look away from the road ahead, our hands automatically tend to steer in that direction. The car can veer off the road or into another traffic lane. Even looking at a passenger in the car takes the driver’s eyes off of the street and increases the risk of a collision.

These are but a few examples of the many things that can distract the operator of a motor vehicle and cause an accident.

Aggressive Driving and Road Rage

When a driver tailgates other cars, tries to “teach a lesson” to other drivers, or loses control of his temper, the odds of a high-speed, multi-vehicle crash skyrocket. Road rage and aggressive driving are some of the more common causes of highway accidents in our state.

A New Jersey personal injury attorney can help you go after compensation from the careless party who caused the crash that injured you. Contact us today for a free consultation.