Nearly one-third of all car accidents involve rear-ending. With that in mind, yes. Tailgating can cause serious car accidents. Generally, when tailgating occurs, it leaves the driver a very small margin for error.
If the lead car needs to slam on brakes to avoid a collision or hazard, the tailgater has little option but to hit the car in front of them. In this article, we discuss everything you need to know about tailgating, how to avoid it, and what to do if you’re involved in a rear-end collision.
Continue reading to learn more.
What Is Tailgaiting?
Tailgating occurs when a person drives too closely behind another vehicle. Most experts recommend leaving at least two car lengths of space between your vehicle and the vehicle in front of you (when driving at slow speed).
It’s advisable to leave much more space when traveling on the highways or at faster speeds. However, when that space is decreased (even by a few feet), it severely limits a driver’s ability to avoid collisions.
How to Avoid Tailgating
Most drivers are guilty of tailgating at one time or another. However, it’s in your best interest to avoid the practice as much as possible. With that in mind, you should consider the following when driving:
- Remain conscious of your surroundings
- Limit distractions (i.e., cell phones, food, etc.)
- Keep as much space between you and the next driver as possible
- If you’re tired, pull over and take a nap in a safe place
- Get your brakes, tires, and tire pressure checked regularly
- Don’t be in a rush when driving – it can be deadly
You can control whether or not you tailgate other vehicles. However, you have no control over other drivers on the road. Continue reading to learn tips to stay away from tailgaters while driving.
How to Stay Away From Tailgators
Tailgating isn’t always due to intentional recklessness. On the contrary, most tailgaters are not aware of their proximity to the car in front of them due to several factors such as:
- Driving while fatigued
- Driving while distracted
- Driving aggressively
- Drunk or drugged driving
Suppose you notice a car tailgating your vehicle or another close-by vehicle. In that case, it’s recommended that you move your car to the shoulder and allow the tailgater to pass.
If that’s not possible under the circumstances, take the soonest turn off the road or highways that you can. If you’re unable to get away from another car driving too close to yours, it may be helpful to drive a bit slower. That may incentivize the tailgating driver to switch lanes.
The most important thing here is to pay attention to other drivers around you and take precautions when you notice tailgating. Doing so could save you a lot of frustration, pain, time, and potentially, money.
Who’s at Fault in Tailgating Accidents?
In most cases, the tailgater is liable for accidents. The logic is that they may have avoided the accident if they allowed the recommended space between the next car. However, in some cases, the lead driver is liable for tailgating accidents.
A few possible scenarios that could result in the lead driver being held liable for an accident include but are not limited to:
- The lead driver unlawfully or recklessly pulled in front of the rear driver
- The lead driver slams on the brakes for no apparent reason
- Instances of road rage or insurance fraud
- Drunk or drugged driving
- The lead driver was distracted
It’s not easy to prove the lead driver is responsible for a car accident. However, it’s not impossible either.
If you’re involved in a rear-end collision (where you believe it was the lead driver’s fault), it’s in your best interest to identify as many eyewitnesses as possible before leaving the scene.
What to do If You Are Injured in a Tailgating Accident
Common injuries in tailgating accidents include whiplash, traumatic brain injury (TBI), injuries to the lower extremities, facial injuries, and more. If you’re injured in a rear-end collision, it’s in your best interest to take the following steps:
- Check on the other driver’s involved in the accident
- Contact the police, notify your insurance, and call an ambulance if necessary
- Call an experienced auto accident lawyer
- Collect evidence at the scene (i.e., pictures, videos, eyewitness information)
- Seek immediate medical attention
If you’ve been injured in a tailgating accident in Florida, working with a proven auto accident lawyer can be the difference between maximum compensation and no compensation.
Contact Schrier Law Group for your free initial consultation with a proven auto accident lawyer in Florida today.
If you are involved in an accident, comprehensively documenting of what happened could help support your case; should you choose to hire an attorney. Accidents can be a difficult and bewildering time. Therefore, taking photos of the scene of the accident could help you or your attorney catch some of the most important details that could be missed due to your pain or confusion.
If you’ve been involved in an accident, it may benefit you to contact a car accident lawyer. Your Florida accident lawyer can help you obtain the fair value for your vehicle damage and either negotiate an appropriate settlement for your injury case or advocate for you in court. The right attorney will secure the most compensation for you, by presenting the most relevant evidence to ensure that you are awarded all of the damages that you are entitled to.
Take Photos of The Scene And Your Injuries
They say a picture is worth 1000 words. By taking photos of the accident scene, including the damage done to both vehicles, as well as the position of the vehicles after the crash, you will be in a better position to prove what actually took place. Most of the photos can be used as evidence in court.
Many bruises, cuts, lacerations, and scrapes will eventually heal, but having pictures of your injuries could also help your Florida car accident attorney build a case for you. If you have permanent scars or bruises, Florida Law permits you to obtain compensation for the cost to surgically improve the scars and for the permanent damage that has been done because of the negligence of the other driver. Damages are typically awarded based on proof and many photos can provide additional evidence regarding your injuries.
Take a picture of Your Vehicle and Other Vehicles Involved
Capturing photos of your vehicle and the other vehicles involved after the crash may prevent you from being responsible for damages that you did not cause.
The photos that you take could demonstrate some of the details about your accident that you may not recall months or years later. They also may assist your lawyer and legal team with your case, by proving omissions in witness statements, as well as various inconsistencies that may appear on police reports.
Take A Lot of Pictures and Videos
Taking more videos and photos than necessary may prove useful when it’s time to file an insurance claim or a lawsuit.
The more photos you have, the more likely they can provide context for your accident and help your Florida personal injury law firm tell the story of your accident and why you deserve to recover compensation.
It could also be of use to take photos of the licenses and insurance information of the parties involved. After your accident, things may be lost, especially if your car gets towed, along with your personal possessions inside. Taking photos of everyone’s documentation and evidence can ensure that you have a backup. These photos should also be tagged, with the date of the accident, which may come in handy if the Florida statute of limitations is an issue in your case.
Get Close, Shoot Wide, Cover Everything
Getting close-up shots can help provide more details about the specific elements of your accident. They also can provide some evidence as to how the accident may have occurred. Shooting wide shots also provide context, as to where the accident happened and may provide evidence as to who’s liable. A best practice, post-accident, is to take lots of photos, to cover everything that you think will be helpful evidence, whether for yourself or for your Personal Injury Attorney to use.
Give The Photo a Sense of Scale
Placing a small item in the photo to provide a reference point for your damages or injuries could be very useful. Pictures can show how your injuries have changed over time, especially if they worsen. Using everyday items in your post-crash photos as a reference point could help expedite your injury claims process.
Be Sure To Capture Hazards That Led To the Accident
Capturing photos of what may have contributed to your accident could establish who is at fault and, therefore, liable for the accident.
Proving liability is essential to winning a car accident case, whether in or out of court. It is up to you, the victim, to prove who the negligent party was in your case. By capturing the right photos, you will be able to assist in establishing who the at-fault party was and who should be providing compensation for your case.
Don’t Forget About The Lighting in The Photos
Capturing photos with and without flash could make a difference in the quality of the images. That’s why Florida car accident attorneys suggest taking lots of pictures and changing the lighting options on those photos so that you don’t miss any crucial details.
Factors That Can Affect The Quality Of Your Pictures
Many factors could contribute to the overall quality of your photos. The lighting and the angles you take the photo at can affect the appearance and perception of your accident or injuries. Adjust for the lighting, zoom in and out, and secure videos also, to make sure that you cover all of your bases.
Contact The Schrier Law Group Today
If you need a car accident attorney, they will be able to determine which photos to use, post-accident, to assist you with your case, contact Schrier Law Group at 1-800-700-7285. You may not know about some of the best car accident and negligence law firms because they are not necessarily on tv commercials. Schrier Law Group is known for making a huge difference and for changing the negative perception that too many have about personal injury lawyers. The lawyers, investigators, and assistants, at Schrier Law Group, aggressively and compassionately represent those who have unfortunately been injured victims of negligence.