Tailgating, the practice of driving very closely behind another vehicle, is one of the most dangerous driving behaviors one can exhibit. It’s also extremely common: about three out of four drivers surveyed had been tailgated at least once in the past 6 months. Tailgating dramatically increases the risk of a rear-end crash because if the leading car has to come to an abrupt stop, the trailing car will have very little time to react to avoid a collision. Rear-end crashes kill thousands of people across the country every year. Keeping a safe distance from the vehicle ahead of you can literally save your life.
Many drivers who are tailgating may not be aware of the danger. Experts recommend keeping at least a two second distance between your vehicle and the vehicle in front of you in ideal conditions. If the conditions are not ideal, such as rain, snow, or fog, more distance should be given to the leading vehicle. If the vehicle ahead of you were to slam on its brakes, would you be able to stop safely without hitting that vehicle? If the answer is not “200 percent yes”, you’re likely traveling too closely.
Should you be on the receiving end of a tailgating vehicle, there are certain ways to reduce your risk of being rear-ended. If you’re in a position to change lanes safely, doing so will hopefully allow the tailgater to pass your vehicle. If you’re not, leave extra space between you and the car in front of you to allow yourself extra time to stop should that vehicle come to an abrupt stop. This extra time will hopefully translate to giving the tailgating vehicle extra time to stop as well, avoiding a collision. Never perform a ‘brake check’ on tailgating vehicles. This could not only lead to a collision, but a possible road rage incident. There are no winners in a road rage incident.
If you have been rear-ended by a tailgating driver and have suffered injury, you may be entitled to financial compensation for medical care, lost wages, vehicle repair, and pain and suffering. An experienced car accident lawyer at the Law Offices of Scott Warmuth can help you protect your legal rights. For a free accident consultation, call us today at 888-517-9888.