One in three crashes on Australian roads are caused by tailgating, according to new data from national insurer AAMI.
AAMI has revealed the most common accident types across the country, with a third (31 per cent) of all road accidents caused by nose-to-tail collisions, which is often linked to tailgating and driver distraction.
The latest AAMI Crash Index also found 23 per cent of accidents resulted from a driver’s failure to give way and 18 per cent of crashes are caused by colliding with a stationary object. Collisions while reversing and with a parked car were also common incidents.
The national insurer analysed 360,000 claims across Australia in the year ending June 2018.
AAMI spokesperson Ashleigh Paterson said driver distraction was the leading cause of many accidents.
“Driver distraction continues to be the leading cause of car accidents in Australia and these common accident types are generally caused by people taking their eyes off the road or trying to multi-task while driving,” Paterson said in a statement.
“If you are behind the wheel of a car, you should be concentrating on what’s in front of you, what’s happening around you, and driving to the conditions.
“Taking your eyes off the road for just a split second can have devastating consequences and even the smallest distraction can be deadly. It’s just not worth the risk.”
Motorists in Victoria were the worst in the country for nose-to-tail collisions, while New South Wales motorists are more likely to be involved in crashes from failing to give way.
Western Australia is the worst state for collisions while reversing, and motorists in Tasmania were the worst in the country for colliding with parked cars. Meanwhile, Northern Territory drivers are the worst in the country for colliding with a stationary object and with an animal, which was more than double the national average.
“The biggest difference we saw at a state level compared to the rest of the nation was the amount of collisions with a stationary object,” Paterson added. “One in three collisions (31 per cent) in the Northern Territory are with a stationary object compared to 18 per cent of all collisions nationally.”
The study also found that the afternoon period between 1pm to 4.30pm was the most common time of the day for accidents and was responsible for 27 per cent of all crashes.
Friday was also found to be the most common day of the week for car accidents with 16 per cent of all accidents occurring then. In contrast, only 10 per cent of accidents occur on a Sunday, making it the day people are least likely to have an accident.
“We are encouraging all drivers to avoid distractions like mobile and digital devices, expect the unexpected from other occupants on the road and leave plenty of room between you and the vehicle in front of you,” Paterson said.
AAMI also provided some safe driving tips for drivers to follow. These included: