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I’m seeing signs on the road, “Crashes are not accidents”. Is that correct? Discus please!


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Sometimes they are, sometimes they aren't.

Nowadays, with distracted driving being a major factor, it is rarely "accidental" that you brought out your phone and were texting when you rear ended the car at the light.  

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1 minute ago, Razors Edge said:

Sometimes they are, sometimes they aren't.

Nowadays, with distracted driving being a major factor, it is rarely "accidental" that you brought out your phone and were texting when you rear ended the car at the light.  

"accidental", as in "unintended"

Stupid, reckless, selfish, yes,

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Just now, 12string said:

Considering that those signs are ads for lawyers, it's not correct.  Unless you can get some money

Assuming you're stopped at a red light and are rear ended by a person on their phone texting, is that an accident?  If you are injured (or even just greatly inconvenienced), do you think you should get something as compensation?

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3 minutes ago, Further said:

The corporate mind set is that all accidents are preventable, if you get hurt it’s your fault. I guess the same theory can apply to driving 

Maybe 1% are avoidable IMHO.  We had a giant eucalyptus tree snap & crush a car & kill the driver.  OK in that instance wrong place wrong time and not the fault of anyone driving.  But a vast majority of traffic collisions are avoidable.  

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The signs are not lawyer ads, they are traffic safety signs put up by the turnpike ahspose. It seems like the “no one’s fault” part is read into the definition. The actual definitions I have read all say unintended bad thing, with no mention of cause or culpability. I just read that the AP style guide in 2016 specified using collision instead of accident because of that connotation.  I agree with that.  

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5 minutes ago, Philander Seabury said:

I just read that the AP style guide in 2016 specified using collision instead of accident because of that connotation.

Thinking like a shyster lawyer now, eh?  You're too old for a new career!

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3 minutes ago, Philander Seabury said:

It seems like the “no one’s fault” part is read into the definition

IMHO   'accident' implies lack of responsibility.  

I've always called them collisions.    

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1 minute ago, Bikeguy said:

IMHO   'accident' implies lack of responsibility.  

I've always called them collisions.    

In cop speak we called them traffic collisions or “TC’s”  We would use it as a verb too, the driver TC’d into the tree…  

 

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I don't technically agree since I think the definition of accident is broader than that, but I see that the signs can serve a purpose from a normative standpoint.  It's a reminder that a lot of "accidents" can be caused by people engaging in unsafe behavior such as phone calls, speeding, eating, drinking, being overtired or subject to lots of other distractions.   People may not intend to cause an accident, but in many cases it wouldn't happen without careless action by people.

Wouldn't it be ironic if a driver  got distracted trying to figure out the meaning of the sign?

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2 minutes ago, 12string said:

Just because they are avoidable doesn't mean they aren't accidental.  Not accidental would mean intentional.  Pretty rare anyone intends to hit someone's car.

"reckless" still has culpability.

I remember as a kid, we were always doing idiotic stuff in the house like throwing balls or swinging bats after we would come home from playing outside.  Sometimes we broke stuff - knocked over lamps or something on a table.  We used the "it was an accident" excuse a LOT.  My parents never bought that one.

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Just now, Razors Edge said:

I remember as a kid, we were always doing idiotic stuff in the house like throwing balls or swinging bats after we would come home from playing outside.  Sometimes we broke stuff - knocked over lamps or something on a table.  We used the "it was an accident" excuse a LOT.  My parents never bought that one.

I always heard it as “on accident”, ahspose to contrast it with “on porpoise”. :)

 

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22 minutes ago, Philander Seabury said:

The signs are not lawyer ads, they are traffic safety signs put up by the turnpike ahspose. It seems like the “no one’s fault” part is read into the definition. The actual definitions I have read all say unintended bad thing, with no mention of cause or culpability. I just read that the AP style guide in 2016 specified using collision instead of accident because of that connotation.  I agree with that.  

Haven't seen those, just the lawyer ads.

Maybe worse that the DOT is saying that.  Only empowers the people who think they are good texting drivers, they aren't planning on hitting anyone

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47 minutes ago, ChrisL said:

Maybe 1% are avoidable IMHO.  We had a giant eucalyptus tree snap & crush a car & kill the driver.  OK in that instance wrong place wrong time and not the fault of anyone driving.  But a vast majority of traffic collisions are avoidable.  

This.

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34 minutes ago, Razors Edge said:

I remember as a kid, we were always doing idiotic stuff in the house like throwing balls or swinging bats after we would come home from playing outside.  Sometimes we broke stuff - knocked over lamps or something on a table.  We used the "it was an accident" excuse a LOT.  My parents never bought that one.

Are you Peter Brady???!!!

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2 hours ago, Further said:

The corporate mind set is that all accidents are preventable, if you get hurt it’s your fault. I guess the same theory can apply to driving 

Sounds like it.

Nobody ever just has a heart attack on the road, I suppose, or passes out, or a sinkhole develops, or a deer runs out in the road, or a rockslide or flood or avalanche.   Lots of things can be explained yet still be entirely accidental.

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35 minutes ago, Randomguy said:

Sounds like it.

Nobody ever just has a heart attack on the road, I suppose, or passes out, or a sinkhole develops, or a deer runs out in the road, or a rockslide or flood or avalanche.   Lots of things can be explained yet still be entirely accidental.

All good responses.  What do you consider the percentage of all "auito accidents" to be from these causes.  Is 2% too high?  Sorry, this is the sort of reasoning that simply becomes an excuse for bad behavior.

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6 minutes ago, maddmaxx said:

All good responses.  What do you consider the percentage of all "auito accidents" to be from these causes.  Is 2% too high?  Sorry, this is the sort of reasoning that simply becomes an excuse for bad behavior.

I don't know the figures.  Lots of bad behavior out there, and still there are accidents that aren't a result from it.  Saying that there aren't accidents is too simplistic and fits a narrative that someone is always available to point fingers at, every time.

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I’d say 2% is in the ballpark. I am a fan of fuzzy logic so I would go along with “most collisions are caused by stupid shit”. 
Although, speaking of fuzzy, ice is a good one.  Discretion is the better part of valor so not driving when there is possible ice would be the preventable part, although also vigilance, reasonable speed, no sudden moves, etc help avoid problems with ice. 

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Just now, Randomguy said:

I don't know the figures.  Lots of bad behavior out there, and still there are accidents that aren't a result from it.  Saying that there aren't accidents is too simplistic and fits a narrative that someone is always available to point fingers at, every time.

And using a narrative that points to the exception of the rule is the same.  Let's just substitute the phrase "by far the most accidents are" for all then.

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1 minute ago, maddmaxx said:

And using a narrative that points to the exception of the rule is the same.  Let's just substitute the phrase "by far the most accidents are" for all then.

To be fair, saying 'there are no accidents' doesn't make it a rule and there are not exceptions to non-existent rules.  

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5 minutes ago, Randomguy said:

To be fair, saying 'there are no accidents' doesn't make it a rule and there are not exceptions to non-existent rules.  

Adding “most” would detract from the pithiness and conciseness and thought-provoking qualities but would be more accurate. 

It was an effective safety message for me because it got me thinking. :)

 

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4 minutes ago, Philander Seabury said:

Adding “most” would detract from the pithiness and conciseness and thought-provoking qualities but would be more accurate. 

Ah, the 'most' is already known.  More of a shift to blame someone for absolutely everything out there, presumably to weasel out of a legal responsibility or to charge someone for something monetarily.   

Usually the cause of an accident is apparent after a brief examination of the available evidence.   For instance, an insurance company has an incentive to call getting hit by a deer something like 'excessive speed for the conditions' to weasel out of a claim or somesuch.

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I call them wrecks. 2 years ago someone did a left turn in front of the Miata. Im sure she didn’t want a wreck, but it was her fault. Last year we got rear-ended in Lincoln NE. Clear and dry. Driver got a DUI. She didn’t want to wreck, but it was her fault she hit us. When the truck tire blew and the carcass hit my car, was that an accident? Or poor truck maintenance?

If a car in front of me kicks up a rock and it breaks my windshield, we are getting closer to accident territory. Hopefully I wasn’t following too close but sometimes they fly much further than the 2 second rule!

WoW’s cousin had a heart attack and died while driving. His car flew off the road. Her family has a history of heart trouble, Only thing I will blame him for is smoking probably accelerated his demise. 
Lord knows I’ve had enough close calls with deer to know that would be an accident. Most times they are avoidable but sometimes are very WTF moments!

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9 hours ago, Randomguy said:

Ah, the 'most' is already known.  More of a shift to blame someone for absolutely everything out there, presumably to weasel out of a legal responsibility or to charge someone for something monetarily.   

Usually the cause of an accident is apparent after a brief examination of the available evidence.   For instance, an insurance company has an incentive to call getting hit by a deer something like 'excessive speed for the conditions' to weasel out of a claim or somesuch.

That's the edge of the earth you just fell over.

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We don’t use “accident” in our incident investigations. We have: near miss, property damage, injury, & fatality. There are generally two kinds of Near Misses: way out in the yard, and clean up your drawers. Property Damage has paint transfer, minor bump, major damage and get out the big checkbook. Injuries range from: no treatment, minor first aid, major first aid, doctor visit(not OSHA recordable), doctor visit (OSHA recordable), and admitted to hospital. 
 

We try to avoid classifying injuries as OSHA recordable, if we can. Injury rates are something our customers look at closely. 

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15 hours ago, Further said:

The corporate mind set is that all accidents are preventable, if you get hurt it’s your fault. I guess the same theory can apply to driving 

When we're trying to get to the "Root Cause" we generally try to push it towards either a training, procedure/process, or a conditions issue. Conditions issues run <20% of the incidents, 80% are a result of something someone (not necessarily the victim) intentionally did. I keep telling upper folks that we have to consider what a "reasonable person" would do in the same situation.

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One of my favourite books ever was psychologist James Reason’s “Human Error”. I find malfeasance pretty fascinating since as learning creatures it should keep decreasing but does snot always do that. That may be how AI finally kicks our asses. No mistakes.  Or at least way less, as in automated driving. 

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I think quite a few of the "driver attributed" (94% ±2.2%) crashes are DEFINITELY avoidable and in an A->B->C(rash) sort of way, not accidental and largely avoidable.  Drive the proper speed, leave the proper following distance, pay attention to the road and conditions, and don't drive when sleepy/drunk/otherwise impaired, and many "accidents" won't happen.  We don't get rid of ALL crashes, but we certainly can reduce the heck out of them.  In fact, all the added safety features we keep getting on new cars are directly in relation to compensating for drivers' mistakes (purposeful or not).  On the flip side, we also keep making it EASIER to drive and to drive poorly, so it's a push-pull game.  Give a kid with no experience a car with launch control, 600 hp, and an automatic transmission, and you get a "driver" with very few driving skills. 

Statistics in Table 2 show that the recognition error, which included driver’s inattention, internal and external distractions, and inadequate surveillance, was the most (41% ±2.2%) frequently assigned critical reason. Decision error such as driving too fast for conditions, too fast for the curve, false assumption of others’ actions, illegal maneuver and misjudgment of gap or others’ speed accounted for about 33 percent (±3.7%) of the crashes. In about 11 percent (±2.7%) of the crashes, the critical reason was performance error such as overcompensation, poor directional control, etc. Sleep was the most common critical reason among non-performance errors that accounted for 7 percent (±1.0%) of the crashes. Other driver errors were recorded as critical reasons for about 8 percent (±1.9%) of the drivers.

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Human Performance training has a lot of insight in it. At my work they spent a fortune training every one but the supervisors didn’t really understand it and just spouted catch phrases for a while and then it faded away 

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