In some cases, you can point to one mistake that appears to have caused a car accident, such as another driver running a stop sign and hitting your car. If they hadn’t made that error, you wouldn’t have been injured.
There is some truth to this, of course, but it’s also possible to dig deeper. The reality is that many accidents are the result of numerous little errors that add up until a crash is inevitable.
The accumulation and the risk from small events can surprise you
You can see this principle explored in the book To Err is Human, which states that a chain of events often allows these small errors to evolve or grow and that “their accumulation results in an accident.”
For example, perhaps that other driver overslept. This means they’re late for work. As a result, they start speeding to try to make up time. They also take out their phone to text a coworker that they’re going to be a bit late to the office.
All of these things can compound upon one another. If they had gotten up on time, they could have prevented the crash, but waking up late starts a chain reaction of poor choices as they try to rectify the situation. The end result is that they’re looking at their phone and they never see the stop sign, which they speed through as they slam into your car — and neither one of you makes it to work on time.
You may seek compensation after a car wreck
If another driver injures you in a car accident, you may be able to seek financial compensation to help cover your medical bills, lost wages and other costs.