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Why do road traffic accidents happen?

Speeding and inadequate orientation are the most frequent explanations of why road traffic accidents occur. This is the conclusion of the overall analysis of the 291 serious road traffic accidents which the Danish Road Traffic Accident Investigation Board (AIB) has analyzed in depth over the past 13 years.
High speed and poor orientation mistakes each contribute to up to half of the investigated accidents.
 
Other mistakes by road users also contribute to accidents taking place: Inattention, interpretation mistakes, incorrect reaction and alcohol are all contributing factors to the accidents.
 
Most of the accidents could have been avoided, if the road users had not made mistakes. This does not mean that traffic safety can only be improved by influencing road users directly. Through improved vehicles and better roads it is often possible to prevent road users making mistakes and thereby prevent road traffic accidents from happening.
 
It is not only human factors that make accidents happen. Mistakes regarding roads/surroundings contribute to approximately every third of the analyzed accidents, and failed conditions regarding vehicles contribute to approximately every fifth accident.
 
The overall analysis also shows which conditions most frequently worsen the personal injuries.
The most frequent of these conditions are lack of seatbelt and trees along the road.