Motor vehicle crashes are a leading cause of serious injury and death in the United States. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), more than 33,000 people were killed and over 2.2 million were injured in motor vehicle accidents in 2009. Rear-end collisions account for 28 percent of all crashes.
A rear-end collision occurs when the front bumper of one motor vehicle hits the back bumper of another. A rear-end collision can initiate a chain reaction of crashes involving several vehicles as the car that was struck then hits the car in front of it as well. Upon impact, rear-end collisions throw vehicle occupants forward and often cause serious injuries such as traumatic brain injuries, whiplash and cervical fractures.
Drivers are responsible for following the car in front at a safe distance so they can stop as necessary. If a driver cannot stop and rear-ends another vehicle, that driver is usually blamed for the accident. The following are some of the major causes of a rear-end collision:
- Tailgating or following the lead car too closely.
- Distracted driving activities such as talking on the phone or texting.
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
- Extreme speed changes by the lead car that make it difficult to stop in time.
- Hazardous lane changes which result in cutting off another driver.
- Inclement weather that affects visibility or makes roads slippery.
- Mechanical problems such as faulty brakes, burned out brake lights or broken tail lights.
Rear-end collisions, even those that occur at very low speeds, can cause serious head and neck injuries. Have you suffered a serious whiplash or other injury from being rear-ended due to the carelessness or negligence of another driver? Contact Austin car crash lawyer David Todd at the Todd Law Firm at 512-472-7799 for a free consultation. You may also download a free copy of the book How to Choose a Texas Car Wreck Lawyer for additional information.