When it comes to rear-end collisions, an experienced Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyer knows that blame is not as clear as it may appear at first sight. Surely, the driver behind me who hit my car is at fault, most clients assume.
However, it is not always as simple as that. So, why do rear-end collisions happen? Here are the most frequent situations.
1. Distracted Driving
According to the NHTSA, at 55 mph, a driver who is not focused on the road for 5 seconds is like someone driving the length of a football field blindfolded. Anything can happen during this apparently short time. This is why texting and driving is forbidden in most US states, including Florida.
Unfortunately, many drivers break this law. Or they are distracted in other ways behind the wheel, such as:
- Eating or drinking
- Interacting with the navigation or entertainment car systems
- Talking to passengers in the back seat.
For this reason, distracted driving remains the number one most common cause of rear-end accidents.
Tailgating (following the car in front of you too closely) may be a sign of poor ability to judge distances or aggressive driving. In either situation, this is a very risky way of driving.
If it is combined with speeding, the impending crash can be extremely violent, with devastating consequences for everyone involved, including the negligent driver. These accidents often result in severe injuries to the legs, back, spine, and neck.
Driving at very high speed leaves the driver with little to no time to react suddenly and avoid a collision. Despite laws and prevention plans instituted across the US, speeding remains one of the most frequent causes of severe traffic accidents, resulting in life-changing injuries and death.
A Fort Lauderdale car crash lawyer knows that it is very hard to avoid a speeding car behind you. However, always try to give speeding cars a wide berth to overtake you.
4. Sudden Stops
Are there situations when the driver in front may be at fault for a rear-end collision? The clearest example is when the driver applies the brakes suddenly. In this case, the driver behind may not have sufficient time to stop their car and avoid the accident.
However, there are other factors involved, such as speed, the distance between vehicles, or the potential malfunction of the other driver’s brakes. In any situation, you should let a skilled attorney analyze the circumstances of the crash and explain your legal rights.
Ways to Prevent Rear-End Collisions
Let us now discuss what you can do to avoid being hit by the car behind you. These are the most effective best practices while driving.
1. Check Your Rearview Mirror Frequently
Make sure to take a look in the rearview mirror at regular intervals while driving. You will be able to identify a speeding or tailgating driver and make space for them to overtake you. It does not matter if they have the right of way or not – your safety is more important.
2. Brake Smoothly and Steadily
If you start applying the brakes at a safe distance, the car will stop gradually. This will give the driver behind you sufficient time to apply their brakes and avoid hitting you.
3. Do Not Get Behind the Wheel If You Feel Drowsy
Drowsy driving is just as dangerous as drunk driving. You may not be aware that you’ve fallen asleep behind the wheel. And, as we showed above, just a few seconds of not paying attention is enough to cause an accident.
4. Check Your Rear Tail-Lights Frequently
Finally, make sure that the rear signaling lights are working properly on your vehicle. Many rear-end collisions are caused by faulty lights. The driver behind cannot see that you have applied the brakes until it is too late.
Call an Experienced Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Lawyer!
Liability is not always clear in rear-end collisions. This is why you should always consult with a skilled Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyer to understand your legal rights. We do not leave anything to chance and fight for the maximum compensation you deserve.
We offer each new client a free case review, so call us today at (786) 686-2857 to schedule yours!