According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 28 percent of all highway collisions are “rear-end collisions.” One of the most avoidable types of motor vehicle accident, a rear end accident can create collateral damage ranging from inconvenience to immobility – but Ryan Sargent, a car accident attorney, can help.
Major factors contributing to rear end accidents include weather, surrounding events, and, of course, driver inattention. For the front vehicle, the impact of a rear-end collision can be deadly – or at least cause property damage or a soft tissue injury like a strain or sprain. To receive compensation, you must prove the other driver’s negligent behavior caused the accident.
How do I prove negligence?
All drivers are required to conduct themselves safely and reasonably while operating a vehicle. Generally speaking, this means that motorists are required to abide by the speed limit, practice safe lane change protocol, and allow pedestrians and other drivers the right-of-way where applicable. Aside from the obvious exercises in caution, drivers must also adhere to rules of safety and diligence.
When it comes to avoiding a rear end accident, there are a number of options available to drivers. For one, maintaining a safe following distance of at least three car lengths is recommended – and drivers should stay even further back if possible. Of course, refraining from texting and driving is another way to prevent a rear-end collision, and California law has outlawed it since 2009. Lastly, implementing safe hazardous-weather practices can also help prevent rear-end collisions and keep motorists safe.
Despite the multitude of ways drivers can avoid colliding with one another, the statistics do not lie: one out every four car accidents involves a rear end accident, and many of these impacts could have been avoided but for driver misconduct. To establish negligence in a rear-end collision, a victim must show that:
- The other driver owed him a duty of caution.
- The driver breached that duty through some dangerous act, such as speeding or talking on the phone.
- The dangerous act caused a collision.
- The victim sustained personal injuries and/or property damage.
Who is to blame – the rear or front driver?
There is a rebuttable presumption that the rear vehicle is to blame in a rear-end collision. However, this is not always the case, and certain facts can give rise to the opposite scenario. The front vehicle driver could face liability if the circumstances suggest that she was not driving in a reasonably safe manner at the time of the crash.
For example, on a four-lane road, a driver in the far right lane who collides with the vehicle in front of him could escape liability if the facts suggest that the front driver suddenly changed lanes, positioning the vehicle directly in front of the far-right lane driver. Moreover, issues including vehicle defect or roadway interference (e.g., wild animals, debris, etc.) could also help resolve a rear-end collision dispute, and drivers are encouraged to contact attorney Ryan Sargent to review the circumstances of their case and start building a claim.
Injured in a rear-end accident? Contact Sargent Law Firm Today
To schedule a consultation following a rear-end crash, please do not hesitate to contact Sargent Law Firm today: 888-501-6083.