Understanding the Causes of Lafayette Auto Accidents That Occur Close to Home

residential areaWhen driving close to home, many drivers become less vigilant, leading to a higher likelihood of accidents. Familiarity with the roads, routines and surroundings can create a false sense of security, causing drivers to be less attentive.

Below, Galloway Jefcoat dives into why accidents happen close to home, how familiarity can lead to negligence and tips to prevent accidents close to home.

If you were injured in a car crash close to home or anywhere else in the Lafayette area, call our Lafayette car accident lawyers. Our firm provides a free consultation to speak with one of our attorneys. We only get paid if we win your case and you receive compensation.

Turning Wrong Into Right: 337-984-8020.

How Familiarity Could Lead to Negligence?

Drivers often let their guard down on familiar roads, underestimating the potential dangers that lie just around the corner. This negligence can be attributed to several factors:

  • Routine Routes: Drivers often use the same routes repeatedly, causing them to drift into autopilot mode. This allows their attention to drift away from the road in front of them.
  • Overconfidence: Familiarity with the area may lead to overconfidence and less caution. After all, they have used this route so many times before without incident, why should they be worried?
  • Distractions: Being close to home, drivers may feel more comfortable multitasking, such as by adjusting the radio or using a phone.
  • Reduced scanning: Drivers who are familiar with an area may only scan for expected hazards, overlooking unexpected dangers.
  • Delayed reactions: Familiarity could cause delayed reactions to unforeseen changes, such as a bicyclist going out onto the road or a child darting into the street from behind another car.
  • Fatigue From Being on the Road for Too Long: You may be at the end of a long road trip or commute home from work. Fatigue makes it harder to pay as much attention as you should, and there is a risk of falling asleep at the wheel.

Common Causes of Accidents Near Home

Understanding the specific causes of these accidents can help in taking preventive measures. Some common causes include:

Rolling Stops

Drivers may not come to a complete stop at stop signs in their neighborhood. They may feel like they know the area well enough to not come to a complete stop. For example, if they often drive through a residential neighborhood at nighttime, they may be used to seeing less traffic in that area.


Feeling safe in familiar territory can lead to exceeding speed limits. They feel like it is safer to speed because there is little for them to worry about. However, going just a few miles per hour over the limit can be incredibly dangerous in a residential area. You are giving yourself less time to react to what is ahead.

Not Looking for Pedestrians and Cyclists

Residential areas have more pedestrians and cyclists, increasing the risk of collisions. For instance, a driver could hit a pedestrian or cyclists while they are making a right turn or running a stop sign. Slow down and keep an eye out so you have plenty of time to react.

Driveway Accidents

Backing out of driveways without full attention can lead to accidents. Drivers may fail to check for pedestrians, other vehicles or objects in their blind spots.

Impaired Driving

Some drivers may drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs because they are close to home. However, it is best to get a rideshare, a cab or call a friend to prevent any collisions that can jeopardize others’ safety. No matter how close you are to home, it is never safe to drive after consuming alcohol, and it is always illegal to drive while drunk.

If you were injured in a crash caused by a driver who was close to home, one of the forms of negligence discussed above may have been at play. Our experienced lawyers know how to determine the role of negligence in a Lafayette collision. Call us after a  to learn how we may be able to help you during this difficult time.

Preventing Accidents Close to Home

Preventive measures can significantly reduce the risk of accidents near home. Here are some helpful tips:

Stay Alert

Always be aware of your surroundings and stay vigilant, even on familiar roads. You cannot predict the future, so you do not know what unexpected hazard may spring up.

Observe Traffic Rules

Come to a full stop at all stop signs and red lights, obey yield signs and follow right of way laws. Accidents often happen because drivers throw caution to the wind one time and break a traffic law.

Limit Distractions

Put your phone somewhere that is not distracting, like a center console. Stay focused on the road and if you must, pull over to take a phone call or tend to anything else that could distract you while driving.

Slow Down

Drive at a safe speed, especially in residential areas with a lot of pedestrians. Often, pedestrians in neighborhoods assume drivers will be cautious, so they are not as careful as they should be. However, that is not an excuse for driver negligence.

Be Cautious with Pedestrians and Cyclists

Always check for pedestrians and cyclists and avoid sudden stops at crosswalks, particularly in residential areas.

Always Check Behind You When Backing Out

While mirrors and backup cameras help, you should still do a visual check for anyone behind you before backing up. Mirrors and cameras often have blind spots.

Exercise Additional Caution When Driving at Night

Be extra cautious while driving at night, as visibility is reduced and pedestrians may not be easily seen. Slow down and keep your eyes on the road.

Call Galloway Jefcoat After Dealing with The Impact of a Collision

If you or a loved one has been involved in an accident near home, you should consider seeking legal assistance. An experienced attorney can help you understand your rights, gather evidence and build a strong case for compensation.

At Galloway Jefcoat, we provide the legal support you need after a car accident so that you can focus on recovering. We have helped our clients recover millions of dollars in compensation.

Schedule a free case review today: 337-984-8020.