A majority of drivers are either guilty of tailgating or have experienced a tailgater at least once in their lifetime, if not more. A driver is guilty of tailgating when they are following the vehicle in front of them too closely and not allowing enough room to brake suddenly without colliding into them.
In most states tailgating is considered reckless or careless driving which is illegal and can result tickets, license points, and more. Additionally, tailgating is one of the many cause of auto collisions each year. In Ohio the leading cause of all motor vehicles was following too closely, more than 70,580 crashes were caused by this driving technique.
According to the Ohio Public Safety Office these accidents caused 36 fatalities and nearly 19,000 of them involved injuries to drivers and passengers. Tailgating is a serious problem in Ohio that can lead a car crash, injuries, and even death.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a tailgating accident caused by a reckless driver, the victim may be entitled to compensation for property damage, medical bills, lost wages, and more.
Why Do Drivers TailGate?
Although it is against the law for a driver to tailgate, some drivers fail to follow the appropriate distance for various reasons. For example, when a driver is speeding they may tailgate in order to pass other vehicles surrounding them.
Some other common reasons drivers tailgate include:
- Road Rage Sometimes drivers will tailgate others in order to intimidate them into speeding up, moving out of the way, or simply because they are angry.
- Negligence Some drivers, particularly inexperienced drivers, may not be aware that they are not allowing enough room between their vehicle and the one in front of them.
- Distracted Driving If a drivers attention is off the road they are more likely to tailgate a vehicle as they are not fully aware of, and in control of, what they’re doing.
During rush hour traffic more than one driver may be tailgating which could cause multiple rear-end crashes.
How To Prevent A Tailgating Accident
All drivers should know the correct distance at which they should follow a vehicle. Most recommended is the two second rule in which a driver picks a fixed point and one the vehicle in front of them passes the chosen point they should begin counting, they’re own vehicle should pass the fixed point two seconds after the vehicle in front of them. If your vehicle reaches that point faster than that you should try to increase the distance.
Sometimes you may be the victim of a driver tailgating, in these case drivers may want to take certain precautions to avoid being involved in an accident. Some helpful tailgating tips include:
- If you are being followed too closely, consider moving out of that lane rather than putting yourself at risk of being involved in an accident.
- Avoid engaging with the tailgater by making gestures, yelling at them, etc.
- You may want to speed up in order to get more space in between you and the other driver, but if the driver is being aggressive and speeds up as well it may be best to move into another lane.
- If possible consider making the next right hand turn available to rid yourself of the driver tailgating you.
- Do not pump your brakes or try to teach the other driver a lesson, it could only infuriate the driver or cause a collision.
Many times tailgating is the result of road rage or a driver simply being impatient which it is why you should remain calm and make sure that you remain safe above all else.
Tailgating Accident Victim? Contact Our Lawyers Today
Tailgating accidents are completely preventable, but unfortunately they are also sometimes caused by drivers who choose to be reckless behind the wheel. If you or a loved one is seeking legal counsel for their tailgating accident, the experienced team of car accident lawyers at O’Connor, Acciani & Levy are here to help.
For more than 30 years our law firm has representing accident injury clients throughout the Ohio and Northern Kentucky. We are also proud to serve the following areas: