Rear-end accidents are among the most common type of vehicular accidents reported in several states across the country. As a matter of fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) declared that almost 30 percent of car crashes are under rear-end collisions.
Rear-end accidents in Pinellas County alone has increased in the past year. On April 15, 2016, a woman died in a rear-end crash. The woman, Audrey Odeberg, was announced to be dead after she was ejected from a car. She was riding as a passenger when it collided with another vehicle driven by Christopher Bennett on Bruce B. Downs Boulevard near Wesley Chapel.
Accordingly, it is important to know and have a knowledge of the common causes of rear-end accidents and what should be done in case a rear-end crash has happened to your family.
The driver of a car which rear-ends another vehicle is typically the party at fault and is to blame. This comes with some exceptions, though. There are cases wherein a sudden and unexpected stop is used as a common defense asserted by insurance companies and their lawyers.
Still, as a driver, you are assumed to know you must leave enough space between your own vehicle and the car you are following because of sudden brakes. It has been found out that this is not always the case however.
Causes of Rear-End Collisions
Common causes of a rear-end collision include speeding, since a speeding car may not have the time needed to slow down or stop when the car it is following in front slows down or suddenly stops.
Another cause is aggressive driving, since tailgating or not leaving enough space between the vehicle in front of your own can result in a devastating rear-end collision.
Distracted driving may also result to a rear-end collision since a driver may not be aware nor alert when to slow down or stop depending on the speed of the vehicle you are behind of. In some cases, it might be too late to prevent a crash when you are caught up in a distraction. There are also cases where bad weather can be a cause, especially when you are driving in snow, ice, rain, or fog.
Sometimes the one who is driving the front car may also bear some partial responsibility. Events like an unrepaired brake or signal light, or failing to signal a turn for instance can be enough factors to contribute as to why the collision happened in the first place.
What You Can Do About It
Rear-end crashes are taken seriously as other types of car crash cases since it can result to fatalities. The effects of these crashes can turn devastating for the victims left suffering from injuries or from the loss of loved ones. If you find yourself in the midst of a rear-end collision accident, then you must be informed of what you must do.
It is unwise to assume that liability will be clear cut or that the insurance company will simply hand out a recovery compensation to you. Hence, you must first contact the proper authorities. The police or the emergency medical team shall be dispatched on site so that they will be informed of the accident scene.
You must also gather crucial information from the other parties involved in the collision. Information like name, address, phone number, license plate number, driver’s licence number should be exchanged mutually from one party to another. It is also important to gather information from the passengers as well as the eyewitnesses.
Lastly, the accident must be reported to your insurance company as soon as possible. Let them know what exactly happened. What’s left on your part is your willingness to cooperate in giving them all the information necessary. If you need to seek more advice, you may also consult car accident lawyers about your rights and your recovery.