You may have heard the statistics related to the fact that most car accidents occur close to home, but do you know why? Part of the reason is because people relax when they know and drive in an area frequently, and may not pay as much attention to their surroundings. Another reason is because neighborhoods have people backing out of driveways, kids playing in the streets and narrow roadways due to cars parking on the street.

While collisions close to home are common, there are actually two other places where the risks of being involved in a crash are also high: parking lots and on your daily commute.

Parking lot hazards can contribute to crashes

Parking lots are dangerous for a few reasons. First, two cars may begin backing out at the same time, and the drivers may fail to see one another. Second, larger vehicles may impair the vision of drivers trying to pull out into the aisle. If the driver in the aisle isn’t paying attention or is too close, a crash may occur.

More common are accidents caused by a driver who pulls into a parking space and hits the car next to them. Although these types of accidents occur at lower-speeds, the damage to the vehicles involved can be extremely costly.

Keep in mind that pedestrians are also in parking lots, so they are more likely to be hit if a driver isn’t paying attention.

The dangers of going on autopilot during your daily commute

Finally, there is the risk of your morning or afternoon commute. Even if you don’t drive in a busy city, the likelihood of a crash during rush hour is relatively high as everyone is trying to get to work or home after a long day.

If traffic is backed up, the risk of a crash increases again. Why? People use this time to multitask, talking on the phone, texting and doing other things. When drivers fail to  pay attention to the road, they are less likely to see hazards ahead of them or avoid other drivers who make mistakes.

The best way to avoid crashes during your commute is to remain alerts and vigilant. Remember, paying attention to what’s happening around you is the best way to see when others make mistakes that you can avoid and to help you avoid making mistakes that cause a crash and serious related injuries.