Having someone tailgate you (or drive too closely behind your vehicle) can result in a rear-end accident, causing serious injuries or even death.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Information Institute report that rear-end collisions alone cause nearly 2,500 fatalities yearly.
If you suffered injuries due to another driver tailgating you, contact a Pintas & Mullins Law Firm team member at (800) 794-0444 to learn how a Los Angeles tailgating lawyer might be able to help you receive compensation for your injuries.
Tailgating occurs any time a driver does not keep their vehicle far enough away from the vehicle in front of them, making it challenging or even impossible to safely stop in enough time to prevent an accident from occurring.
California vehicle code 21703 says drivers must keep a reasonable distance between their car and the one in front of them. Code 21704 specifies that the driving distance should be 300 feet or more between cars.
In some cases, the driver tailgating remains distracted and is not paying attention to the amount of distance between their vehicle and the one in front of them. Texting and driving, talking on a cell phone, or any other form of distracted driving takes away a driver’s ability to fully react and process any potential dangers that occur.
If the driver in front of them stops for any reason, such as an animal in the roadway, falling debris, an upcoming pothole, or the fact that the driver in front of them stopped quickly, the distracted driver might not have enough concentration on the roadway to react appropriately. Any form of distracted driving is negligent, and if a driver tailgates and causes an accident due to distracted driving, they could be responsible and liable for any injuries that result.
Driving While Under the Influence of Drugs or Alcohol
When a driver is under the influence of drugs or alcohol, they have an impaired judgment regarding the distance between their vehicle and the one in front of them. Additionally, their reaction time will slow down due to their cognitive impairment. If your accident involved a tailgating driver who was under the influence of either drugs or alcohol, they might be liable for any injuries or deaths suffered by victims of the accident.
Road rage is common on the streets of California and throughout the United States. Traffic and congestion in the roadways cause drivers to become frustrated and angry. Instead of handling their emotions appropriately, they may tailgate the vehicle in front of them, even though this does not cause an increase in their ability to get to their destination any sooner. Road rage is a common reason for tailgating, and if an accident occurs due to a driver’s road rage, they will remain responsible for any property damage and injuries that result.
The penalty in California for driving too closely to the car in front of your own is typically a fine of $238.00, plus court costs. Additionally, the driver charged and convicted of tailgating will receive one point on their Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) record. However, if there are injuries, property damage, or death, the driver tailgating will also remain responsible and liable to compensate the victims for those damages as well.
For a free legal consultation with a tailgating accidents lawyer serving Los Angeles, call (800) 794-0444
Avoiding Tailgating Accidents
If someone is tailgating you, you may not have the opportunity to avoid a tailgating accident. However, the following tips may help you possibly detect tailgating behavior, or prevent a future accident caused by your own actions:
- If you are behind a vehicle, always make sure to keep an appropriate amount of distance in order to allow yourself to stop safely.
- Whether you are in front of or behind other vehicles, never drive over the speed limit.
- If there are poor weather conditions, change your speed appropriately to ensure that you have the ability to stop safely.
- If you notice that a vehicle behind you appears to be far too close, do not slam on the brakes, honk your horn, or flash your lights. This may simply provoke the other driver, and cause them to tailgate your vehicle even closer.
- If you notice that a vehicle behind you is tailgating, carefully switch lanes to avoid a tailgating accident.
- Never drive distracted, text and drive, or use a handheld cell phone to talk while driving.
- Never operate a motor vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Los Angeles Tailgating Accidents Lawyer Near Me (800) 794-0444
Tailgating Accident Injuries
Tailgating accidents can result in severe and catastrophic injuries. Some of the types of tailgating accident injuries include:
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
- Aortic dissection
- Back and neck injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Broken or fractured bones
- Internal organ damage
- Internal bleeding
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
This is not an exhaustive list of the injuries you might sustain from an accident. You should always have a medical professional ensure you are not injured following an accident.
Consider Hiring a Los Angeles Tailgating Lawyer
If you were a victim of an accident due to another driver tailgating your vehicle, you might have the right to receive compensation for the property damage to your vehicle, medical bills, pain and suffering, and lost wages. Consider visiting with our legal team at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm at (800) 794-0444 to learn how a Los Angeles tailgating lawyer can help you with your personal injury case.