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The risk of accidents - some statistics

No-one wants to think that they will be involved in an accident, but being aware that an accident could happen to you and the statistics is important. Accidents happen to ordinary people, so anyone who thinks that 'it won't happen to me' is sadly mistaken.

So where do accidents tend to occur, what are the hotspots? Well the answer is that they tend to occur in and around towns. This could be because the roads tend to be busier and more congested here, and the more potential vehicles in a small space the more potential impacts there are, and pro rata there will be.

95% of accidents that involve pedestrians take place in and around towns, which is no great surprise, but it shows that pedestrians are particularly vulnerable in these areas, and it may be more of a surprise to you that 70% of accidents that involve an injury of some sort or another happen in and around towns, so they really are a big accident hotspot.

The only flip side of accidents in rural areas is that whilst there are much less of them, they can be much more severe when they happen. Cars flying around narrow country roads with no visiblity that hit each other clearly lead to a much more major accident than one car misjudging its stopping very slightly at the traffic lights and nudging the bumper of the car infront for instance in the town centre.

Motorways are, statistically speaking, the safest place to drive. Although we all know of horrific accidents and pile-ups on the motorway this is the safest statistically. The bad news is as just outlined, when accidents happen at those speeds they tend to be pretty bad.

Being aware of the fact that accidents happen is not supposed to make you paranoid or nervous of driving, but rather understanding where and when and WHY accidents happen can ensure you run through the appropriate 'what if' scenarios in your ahead, are always anticipating hazards and therefore give yourself the best chance to reacting to them safely and quickly enough to avoid accident for yourself and other road users who may be less diligent than yourself.

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You are travelling along the left-hand lane of a three-lane motorway. Traffic is joining from a slip road. You should A) race the other vehicles B) move to another lane C) maintain a steady speed D) switch on your hazard flashers

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