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5 Common Causes Of Accidents In Nevada

Nevada girl crosses street

Each year, nearly 300 Nevada residents die in fatal car accidents. Similarly, more than 1,000 people are severely injured in motor vehicle accidents annually, across the state.  Even with campaigns like Zero Fatalities, a state initiative to encourage safe driving, and the Highway Safety Performance Plan, Nevada still has a substantially high accident rate.

 

Interestingly enough, the leading reasons for many Nevada car accidents aren’t as common as you might assume. Though drunk driving, driving impaired, and inclement weather all present a real threat, the following five factors are most common for car accidents in Nevada.

 

  • Failure To Stay In The Proper Lane

Every year, more than 40 people are killed in crashes that occur when someone does not remain in the proper lane. Authorities also credit this common mistake to more than 5,000 car crashes annually. Failure to stay in the proper lane is also often referred to as an improper lane change but can also include a driver drifting or merging out of his or her current lane and into the path of another or oncoming vehicle. Be sure to stay within your lane and remain focused at all times. Double check before changing lanes, always use your turning signal, and do not drive if drowsy or distracted.

  • Running Stop Signs

Police report that more than 700,000 car accidents occur annually at stop signs. Many accidents involve rolled-over vehicles, side-impacted or “t-boned” cars, and car-pedestrian collisions. Running a stop sign in Nevada is punishable with a $1,000 fine and up to four points on your driving record. Stop signs should never be ignored. Be sure to come to a complete stop and look both ways before proceeding.

  • Failure To Yield The Right-Of-Way

Another common cause of car accidents in Nevada occurs when drivers fail to yield to another’s right-of-way. This mistake costs the lives of nearly 25 people each year and an average of 6,500 crashes total. Right-of-ways are present at intersections, four-way stops, three-way intersections, left-hand turns, stop signs, pedestrian crossings and yield signs. The best way to avoid a right-of-way collision is to thoroughly understand the laws and regulations.

  • Reckless Driving

Drivers who fail to heed traffic signals or drive too fast for conditions are often the cause of many Nevada accidents. Reckless driving is credited for more than 4,200 accidents every year and causes around 20 deaths annually. Understand the conditions in which you are driving; if you feel uncomfortable driving in inclement weather, at night, or in heavy traffic consider waiting for better conditions. Similarly, make sure you follow the advice of all road signs. For example, if a sign cautions you to slow before a tight turn – slow before the tight turn.  

  • Finally, the most common cause of accidents in Nevada: Distracted Driving

The most common cause of accidents occurs at the hands of a distracted driver. With Nevada being home to some of the nation’s most spectacular scenery and breathtaking cities, it’s easy to get distracted. Avoid using your cell phone, sending a text message, tinkering with the stereo or even eating messy foods while driving. Furthermore, pull over to take photos or sight-see.


Be sure you, your car and your passengers are adequately protected from car accidents with a reliable auto insurance policy. As the leading car insurance company in Reno, Nevada, Heuer Insurance Agency works with you to create a tailor-made policy that fits your wants and needs. Contact us today to consult with one of our agents.

What Car Insurance Coverage is Most Important?

Small Red Bug Car

Whether you’re a first-time driver shopping for your first auto insurance policy, or you’re just looking to revamp your existing auto insurance policy, knowing your options is a crucial part of the process.

Here is a list of the types of coverage available to you in order of importance, from most to least important. Keep in mind that some of the lesser-important types of coverage may still be necessary for you based on your circumstance.

1.    Liability coverage for bodily injury and property damage

The most important coverage is, without a doubt, liability and property damage coverage. In fact, a minimum amount of this coverage is mandated in Nevada, and other states have their minimum requirements as well. Without proper liability and property damage coverage, you are not even legally allowed to drive.

 

Nevada is a 15/30/10 state. This means that you are required to carry at least $15,000 in liability coverage for bodily injury or death for one person, $30,000 for two or more people, and $10,000 for damage to property.

 

If you are caught driving without proper insurance, you face a hefty fine and possibly having your driver’s license revoked. Before anything else, make sure you have proper liability coverage.

2.    Uninsured/Underinsured motorist

If you are involved in an accident and the other driver does not have insurance or adequate coverage, you will be very grateful to have this uninsured/underinsured (UM/UIM) coverage.  If this seems unnecessary, you’d be surprised to find out that more than a quarter of drivers do not have adequate insurance. That puts you at great risk if you are in an accident that was not your fault, and you’re still stuck with medical and auto repair bills, lost wages, etc.

3.    Comprehensive

Comprehensive coverage is for anything non-collision related. Think floods and natural disasters, theft, run-ins with deer or livestock, weather-related damage, etc. If you live in an area especially prone to extreme weather or in an area with a high crime rate, comprehensive may be a good idea.

4.    Collision

If you are involved in a collision with another car of object, collision coverage will cover damages to your car above your deductible. This coverage may be important for someone with a luxury car or a car that would require expensive repairs that you would otherwise not be able to afford. Those with older cars or less-expensive cars may decline this coverage if repairs can afford to be paid out-of-pocket.

5.    Emergency Roadside Service

This coverage is probably the least important but can still play an important role in your coverage. If you find yourself stranded on the side of the road, particularly in an unfamiliar or rural area, this coverage could be significant. Whether you run out of gas, have a flat tire, or a mechanical breakdown, roadside assistance will send a tow truck or roadside assistance vehicle to your rescue. Your insurance company will often pay the towing company directly as well, eliminating the extra stress from your mind.


To find out more about auto insurance in Reno and what coverage options are available to you, talk to the insurance professionals at Heuer Insurance today!

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Tire Talk: The Difference Between All-Wheel And Winter Tires

Car driving through snow

Let’s face it – driving in winter-weather conditions can be unnerving. And when the tires on your car aren’t up-to-par, driving in the winter can be downright dangerous. However, when it comes to choosing which type of tire is best for your car, things can get a bit confusing. Should you purchase a set of snow tires? Would all-weather tires be better for your particular situation? Should you splurge for a set of both, just to be safe?

Pros Of Winter Tires

 

  • Snow tires have better grip. Do you frequently drive on roads that are covered in snow or a sheet of ice? If so, snow tires trump all-weather tires largely because they have superior grip. Not only are these tires designed with a soft, adhesive rubber, but they also have very deep treads that allow for ultimate traction even in the most hazardous conditions. In fact, studies show that winter tires deliver 25 to 50 percent more traction than all-season tires.

 

  • Winter tires are best for breaking in bad weather. You’ve probably been there: that moment when you’re driving in snowy, icy conditions and the moment you attempt to break, your wheels lock up and you slide uncontrollably to a frantic hault. With a set of winter tires, the chances of this happening are greatly reduced. Thanks to the exceptional gripping abilities of winter-tire tread, you can break where you need to, when you need to.

 

Cons of Winter Tires

 

  • Winter tires wear quickly. Though the soft, grippy rubber is ideal when it comes to providing ultimate traction, the material tends to wear down quicker than all-season or summer tires. Sure, winter tires are great in winter conditions, but dry roads or non-wintery conditions can quickly deteriorate the tread quality of the tire.

 

  • Snow tires can affect the handling of your car. Snow tires are known for less-precise handling than all-weather tires simply because of the way they are designed. The soft rubber of winter tires has more give and mobility, and the durable rubber of all-season tires offers better handling in dry conditions.

 

Pros of All-Weather Tires

 

  • You don’t have to change all-weather tires as the seasons change. One of the greatest benefits of all-weather tires is that you don’t have to worry about changing them the second the seasons change. All-weather tires can stay on your car year-round and are also designed with winter-driving conditions in mind. The tread pattern on all-weather tires was created with high-tech compounds that can handle snow, slush and ice, just as they can handle warm, dry conditions. 

 

  • All-weather tires are ideal for unpredictable climates. Do you live in a place where it could be a blizzard one day and spring-like conditions the next? If so, all-weather tires are the best solution for you. They work better on winter roads than summer tires and better on summer roads than winter tires. In places where the weather can be unpredictable, all-weather tires are the best solution.

 

Cons of All-Weather Tires

 

  • All-weather tires could lose grip as the temperature drops. Though all-weather tires undoubtedly have better grip in winter conditions than summer tires, their quality does deteriorate as the temperature drops. Once the temperature reaches about 44 degrees Fahrenheit, the rubber compound reaction within the tire begins to lose its softness, meaning you could be losing a noticeable amount of traction in any type of wet-weather condition.

 

  • All-weather tires wear quickly in warm conditions. Most all-weather tires should have a symbol on the side that indicates they are certified for driving in harsh winter conditions. However, in hot summer weather, the temperature within the tire could become too soft for its own good, meaning that spring and summer driving causes significant wear and tear on your all-weather tires and will ultimately require you to change these tires more frequently.

 


At Heuer Insurance Agency, we deeply value the importance of winter car safety. Use these pros-and-cons to help you determine which type of tire will keep you safe and sound in even the most harsh winter conditions.

Winter Car Safety Checklist

snow car

Winter driving can often be unpredictable and change in the blink of an eye. A seemingly sunny day can turn dark and stormy, leaving you in harrowing driving conditions. It’s important to be prepared for hazardous driving conditions even if you don’t expect them. Here is a checklist of safety preparations you should make so you can safely get yourself from A to B this winter season.

Before the storm hits

 

It’s a good idea to get some things ready in the summer or fall so you don’t have to scramble when the bad weather hits. Here are some things you can do in advance to prepare for winter driving:

  • Have your battery checked and replaced if necessary.
  • Check your belts to make sure they’re not cracked or fraying.
  • Check the hoses in your engine to make sure they’re not brittle or leaking.
  • Check the tread on your tires and consider investing in some snow tires or all-season tires that will handle snowy or slippery roads well.
  • Check your tire pressure, because the pressure will drop with the temperature. Properly inflated tires are important for maintaining good traction.
  • Coolant levels should also be checked when the engine is cold. You can pick up an inexpensive tester to check the level of antifreeze protection at any auto parts store.
  • Make sure all lights are working properly and replaced if any bulbs are burnt out.
  • Check that your wiper blades are working and thorough in their wiping abilities. You can buy rubber boots to put around them to prevent ice or snow from building up on them.
  • Refill the wiper fluid if necessary so you can keep your windshield clean after dirty precipitation falls on it.
  • Have your brakes professionally checked to make sure they’re fully functional. Have the brake fluid checked and refilled, as well.

Items to keep in your car

In the event that you are affected by hazardous winter driving conditions, there are a few things you should keep with you to help get you out of a bind. These include:

  • Ice scraper
  • Flashlight and batteries
  • A spare tire and tire-changing tools
  • A snow shovel and salt/kitty litter to help if you get stuck
  • Reflectors or flares so you’re visible if you do run off the road
  • Jumper cables
  • Tool kit
  • Emergency survival kit, including blankets, nonperishable food, first aid kit, and warm clothing

In the midst of winter

When winter arrives and you inevitably must come face-to-face with the snowy and icy roads, there are still additional measures you can take to ensure your travels are safe. Here are some safe-driving practices that will help you stay safe on the road:

  • Plan ahead. If you can avoid the storm by running your errands on another day, plan for that. Checking the forecast alone can save you a lot of grief.
  • Warm up the car
  • If your trip is long or outside of your usual route, tell someone where you’re going and check-in so somebody is aware if something goes wrong.
  • Don’t use your parking brake to slow down
  • Give yourself more time to stop and more distance from other cars to protect yourself if someone else loses control
  • Don’t use cruise control
  • If you do find yourself stranded, stay in your car to keep warm.
  • Always keep your gas tank at least half-full

Even if you follow every tip and precaution, accidents can and do happen. The best protection for winter driving is a good auto insurance policy. For more information on how to keep safe this winter on the road, talk to the professionals at Heuer Insurance Agency today.

How To Know Its Time For A New Vehicle

broken car

Replacing your trusty old vehicle can be a difficult decision to make, but at some point, it becomes necessary. If one of the following scenarios applies to you, it is time to consider investing in a new car.

 
Your Current Vehicle Is No Longer Safe
There are many things that could result in your vehicle becoming unsafe. Perhaps it has just worn out after years of faithful service, or perhaps it has been irreparably damaged by an accident. Whatever the case, it is essential to replace your vehicle if it is no longer safe to drive.

 
Your Current Vehicle Is Expensive To Drive Or Maintain
If your current vehicle is getting too expensive to maintain or drive, it may be time to consider a replacement. If your car is inefficient and it is getting more and more difficult to pay the increasing cost of gas, you may want to trade it in for a newer, more efficient model. Older vehicles can also become very expensive to maintain. In some cases older cars break down more and more often and in other cases it can become too hard to find replacement parts. Maintaining your vehicle is important to staying safe on the road—if maintenance has become too difficult, it is time for a new car.

 
Your Current Vehicle No Longer Suits Your Lifestyle
Life brings many changes, and in some cases, this means it is time to change your vehicle as well. Maybe you’ve had a new baby and you need a bigger vehicle, or maybe all your kids have grown up and moved out and you’d like to find a new, more efficient replacement. When your life and needs change, it is time to get a vehicle that suits those changes. Be sure to consider auto insurance policies when choosing your new car, some cars can be much more expensive to insure than others, so you should make sure you pick a car that you can afford to insure. If you need help making a decision, contact an insurance agent before you buy a new vehicle.

Simple Ways to Save Money on Gas

gas money

Sure, gas prices are lower than they’ve been in years, but how long will that last? The savings have been awesome, and to get even more bang for your buck at the pump, here are some tips that can help improve your fuel economy.

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Do I Need Motorhome Insurance?

Motorhome insurance is a lot like auto insurance, but with more options to cover the unique features and risks of RVs.

Even though a motorhome is usually much more valuable than a car, you might be surprised to find out that motorhome insurance is usually more affordable than auto insurance. That’s in part because RV owners are typically more experienced drivers, and motorhomes are driven less often than cars.

The type of motorhome insurance you need will depend on several factors, including the type of RV, how often it’s driven, what it’s used for, and whether you own it outright.

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Tips for Making your Car Last Longer

Automobiles are notorious for their collective depreciating value. The moment that you drive it off the lot your car begins to lose its value and, barring a great sales pitch or a lot of additional mechanic work, you will never be able to sell it for more than you bought it.

This means that you are currently losing money on your car. Depressing, isn’t it?

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Well, luckily, even though there really is not a whole lot you can do to make the money back you have spent on your mobile asset, there are multiple ways to get your money’s worth. In other words, while your car’s value will continue to decline, you can still make good use of it; and wasn’t that the point all along?

There are multiple ways to get quality use from your car and to have it repay you in service offered for years to come if you will take the steps to ensure that the vehicle last for a long, long time. Here are some tips for how to make your car last so you can get the most use out of it as possible:

• GET INSURANCE! Not only is auto insurance in Sparks and Reno Nevada required by the law, it is also simply a good idea. An auto insurance policy on your car will cover the vehicle financially, ensuring that you are able to keep it in good repair for years to come no matter what calamities may befall the car.
• Perform regular oil changes. An engine’s oil is its life blood. While a car’s engine will need to fuel to run, it needs oil to function. An engine without oil is doomed to break down and incur massive repair costs.
• Consult the car’s manual for replacement dates. The manufacture will play it safe and tell the owner to replace important aspects to the engine such as belts and timers before those items are in any real danger of giving out, but this does not mean that you should risk it for too long as an exploding belt can spell the instant destruction for most engines.
• Lastly, change your driving habits to ensure your vehicles long life. Peeling out, accelerating too quickly, slamming the breaks, revving the engine, and driving aggressive in general are great ways to lose money on your vehicle. Driving defensively and avoiding accidents while not putting unneeded stress on the vehicle will be one of the best ways for you to get the most from your large purchase.

In the end it does not take a lot of effort to get the most from your vehicle, you just need to do it. When you do you will be able to save money in the long and have fewer worries concerning your depreciating asset known as the family car.