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Whether you are taking a quick trip to the grocery store or heading out for a long vacation, you want to arrive at your destination safely. Even though many car accidents involve only two vehicles, an increasing number have three or more. 

In early July, Oklahoma City police officers responded to a fatal collision involving three vehicles.  While the accident investigation for that crash is not yet complete, pileups tend to occur for just a few reasons. Here are some of them: 

Speed 

Speed limits can be frustrating. After all, you may think you can safely drive faster than posted limits. If you want to avoid a multi-car crash, though, you must control your vehicle’s speed. By slowing down, you have more time to react to events unfolding in front of your car. 

Tailgating 

Following the car in front of you too closely is a recipe for disaster. If the driver of that vehicle must stop suddenly, you need sufficient time to stop your vehicle. Generally, experts recommend following the three-second rule. To do so, find a fixed point along the roadway. Three seconds should pass between when the vehicle in front of you passes the fixed point and when your car does. 

Distracted driving 

You probably know by now that distracted driving is a bad idea. Taking your eyes off the road to send a text message, look at a map, make a phone call or do anything else may put your life in danger. It may also land you and your vehicle in the middle of a pileup. 

Fatigue 

Drowsy driving may be just as dangerous as intoxicated driving. If you drive with insufficient rest, your reflexes may slow. Instead of being able to safely maneuver your vehicle out of danger, you may collide with one or more other cars. 

Any car accident can be dangerous. However, when three or more vehicles collide, your chances of sustaining a serious injury or dying increase. By understanding why pileups happen on Oklahoma’s roadways, you can develop a strategy for reaching your destination without incident.