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Most Common Causes of Car Accidents in Washington State

By Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. on January 28, 2016

Many car accidents are preventable.  They occur not because they were inevitable, but because one driver was negligent, careless, or reckless. These actions lead to tragic consequences for others on the road.

Over the years, Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. have seen many different types of car accidents. Here are the most common causes of car accidents in Washington in recent years:

Drunk Driving

Drunk driving is the number-one cause of fatal car accidents in Washington, according to the Washington State Department of Transportation. Besides facing criminal penalties, drunk drivers can face civil lawsuits for negligence filed by injured motorists and their families.


Speeding is one of the top causes of car crashes in Washington and throughout the country.  Any driver who is exceeding the speed limit or driving at a speed too fast for road conditions (like weather or darkness) is speeding. Speeding greatly increases the risk of causing death or serious injuries to other motorists, pedestrians, or bicyclists.

Distracted Driving

The Washington Department of Transportation estimates that 6,000 U.S. residents are killed in distracted driving crashes every year. Over 500,000 are killed. This includes hundreds of Washington state residents. Although the state now fines on drivers caught on their cell phones while driving, injured persons and their families can also hold these drivers liable in court for the harm they cause – whether the driver was caught in the act or not. Other forms of distracted driving, like eating, playing with the radio, or talking to others in the car, can also result in a crash.

If you or a loved one have been involved in a Seattle car accident, call Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. You can reach us at (888) 228-3860.

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