Car Accidents Caused by Mechanical and Safety Issues
It’s easy to take our cars for granted. We count on them every day to help get us to our jobs, to pick up our children from school, to do errands, and we can take for granted that we’ll get to and from these destinations safely. Proper car maintenance is an important part of owning and driving a car. Maintaining and servicing our vehicles regularly not only ensures we’ll get value for our investment, but it can also ensure our safety. Operating a car that runs inefficiently or is improperly maintained can increase our risk of being involved in an accident. Even with the proper maintenance and repair schedule, the unexpected can happen. Car accidents caused by mechanical problems and safety issues can result in serious injuries, not only for ourselves and our passengers, but for other drivers as well. Maintaining your car properly and knowing what to do in case of a driving emergency can not only avoid damage to your vehicle; it may actually save your life.
Vehicle Safety Maintenance
Many states have annual vehicle inspections to ensure that cars are running both efficiently and safely. If a vehicle fails the inspection, the owner has a certain amount of time to make the necessary repairs. If the repairs aren’t made, the vehicle owner is restricted by law from driving the car, and drivers face serious penalties for driving an uninspected vehicle. South Carolina does not require vehicle inspections by law but it is still a good idea for drivers to make sure their cars are regularly checked and maintained. The American Automobile Association (AAA) recommends drivers perform seasonal checkups to maintain performance and safety of their vehicles. We don’t see some of the harsher winter conditions that make winter car care so important for our cold weather friends, but it’s still a good idea to use this car care and maintenance checklist:
- Inspect tires and tire pressure
- Check the engine air filter and cooling levels
- Make sure all headlight, tail lights, brake lights, turn signals, and emergency flashers and working
- Replace old wiper blades and ensure you have plenty of washer fluid
- Have the battery and charging system tested
- Check your brake system and brake fluid levels
- Check drive belts and engine hoses for cracks or leaks
Handling Driving Emergencies
Despite our best efforts, accidents do happen and emergency situations occasionally crop up. The South Carolina Department of Public Safety offers the following tips for handling driving emergencies:
- Brake failure: Honk your horn to alert other drivers, and downshift or use your emergency brake to slow down
- Flat tire: Coast to a stop. Set your emergency brake before attempting to fix a flat
- Stalled car: Turn on your flashers and exit the car, standing in a safe spot away from traffic
- Stuck accelerator: Turn the engine off, but don’t lock your steering wheel. Pump your brakes hard, as the power braking system will be off. Honk your horn to alert other drivers
The most important thing to do in any emergency is to try and remain calm. Don’t panic, and do your best to slow your vehicle and avoid oncoming traffic.
Contact an Experienced South Carolina Car Accident Attorney
If you or a loved one has been hurt or injured in a car accident, contact Anastopoulo Law Firm today. Our experienced South Carolina car accident attorneys will review your case, and help you get compensation for the damages and injuries you’ve suffered. Don’t delay. We have offices in Charleston and throughout South Carolina, and we are prepared to assist you with your case.