While many people assume that rear-end collisions typically take place in slow speed fender-benders, this is simply not always the case. There are many rear-end crashes that happen on highways at high speeds and cause serious damages. Unfortunately, rear-end accidents can lead to many different types of injuries including whiplash, ligament damage, back and neck injuries, broken bones, facial injuries, and even serious head and brain injuries. Sadly, rear-end collisions at high speeds can also be fatal.
Causes of Rear-End Collisions
In most cases, the driver of the car that fails to stop in time to avoid hitting the car in front will be determined to be at fault for a rear-end collision. Because driver negligence almost always plays a factor in this type of wreck, these negligent behaviors are usually to blame:
- Distracted driving. When drivers take their eyes off the wheel and attention off of driving, it is easy to miss brake lights and stopped traffic. Consequently, distracted drivers frequently cause rear-end accidents.
- Tailgating. When drivers follow too closely, there isn’t enough room to brake and come to a complete stop when traffic stops suddenly. As a result, the vehicle in the back can slam into the car in front of it. This is also the case when drivers are guilty of speeding and behaving aggressively behind the wheel.
- Drowsy driving. When drivers drive while sleepy, they may miss slowing traffic and stop lights. Unfortunately, many drowsy drivers—especially truck drivers—plow into traffic and cause serious injuries to those in the forward vehicle.
- Impaired driving. When drivers get behind the wheel under the influence of alcohol or drugs, they are considered impaired and unable to drive safely. As a result, impaired drivers have altered vision, poor judgment, and slow reactions, which can be factors in rear-end collisions.
While the rule of thumb when it comes to fault in a rear-end crash is typically that the driver in the rear is to blame, it isn’t always true. Defective car parts, such as brake failure, and poor maintenance could be factors in the crash. Because there are many different reasons rear-end accidents occur, it is important to talk with an accident attorney about your case to identify the cause of your rear-end crash.
Contact Shevlin Smith if You've Been Rear-Ended
For help holding a negligent driver or third party accountable for your motor vehicle accident and injuries, please give us a call at (703) 591-0067. We are happy to offer you a free consultation and talk to you more about your case specifics and discuss your rights.