If you were rear-ended and injured, it's important to know your legal options.
Rear-end accidents occur when one vehicle collides with the back of another vehicle, often due to tailgating or distracted driving. These accidents can cause significant injuries and even death.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), rear-end collisions account for approximately 29% of all car accidents in the United States. In one recent year, over 1.8 million rear-end accidents were reported, resulting in over 500,000 injuries and over 2,500 deaths.
Common causes of rear-end accidents
In Tennessee, the Motor Vehicle Code mandates that drivers must maintain a safe following distance from the vehicle ahead, taking into account factors such as road conditions, traffic flow, and vehicle speed. Despite this requirement, not all drivers comply, leading to preventable crashes.
One of the most significant factors in rear-end accidents is following too closely behind another vehicle, known as tailgating. When a driver is tailgating, they may not have enough time to react if the vehicle in front suddenly stops, leading to a collision.
Other common causes of rear-end collisions include:
- Distracted Driving: The rise of smartphone usage has contributed to a sharp increase in distracted driving, which has become a leading cause of rear-end accidents. Drivers who are texting, eating, or engaging in other distractions while behind the wheel may not react in time if the vehicle in front of them slows or stops.
- Speeding: Speeding reduces a driver's ability to react to changing road conditions and increases the likelihood of a rear-end collision. When a driver is traveling at a high rate of speed, they may not have enough time to react and stop if the vehicle in front brakes.
- Failure to Adjust for Poor Road Conditions: Adverse weather conditions, such as rain or fog, can also increase the risk of rear-end accidents. When road conditions are challenging, drivers need to slow down and pay attention so they can control their vehicles and avoid collisions.
Who is most often at fault in a rear-end collision?
In most cases, the driver of the rear vehicle is considered at fault in a rear-end collision. The law presumes that drivers have little control over whether they are hit from behind.
However, there are exceptions to this rule, and determining fault in a rear-end collision can be complex. For example, if another driver swerves in front of you and then slams on their brakes, they may bear some responsibility for the collision since you didn't have enough time to establish a safe following distance.
What factors are considered when determining compensation?
When determining compensation for a rear-end car accident, several factors are considered, including:
- Medical expenses: Reimbursement for medical bills, including doctor visits, hospital stays, physical therapy, and any ongoing medical treatment.
- Lost wages: If the victim is unable to work due to their injuries, they may be compensated for lost wages.
- Pain and suffering: Compensation for physical pain, emotional distress, and any other non-economic damages suffered as a result of the accident.
- Future expenses: If the victim is left with permanent injuries, they may be compensated for future medical expenses, lost earning potential, and other costs related to their injuries.
- Negligence: The extent to which the at-fault driver was responsible for the accident is a key factor in determining compensation.
These are some of the main factors that are considered, but each case is unique, and the amount of compensation a crash victim is entitled to recover will depend on the specific circumstances of the accident.
Talk to a Nashville rear-end accident lawyer to review your legal rights
At the Law Office of Eric Beasley, we can investigate your rear-end collision to find the facts that matter to your case. Our team can examine accident reports, review medical records, interview eyewitnesses, and, if necessary, consult with accident reconstruction experts.
Our goal is to secure fair compensation for the injuries and damages you have sustained. This may include coverage for medical bills, lost wages, and other related costs, as well as compensation for your pain and suffering. We never lose sight of the impact that your accident has had on your life and are determined to achieve a resolution that meets your needs, whether through a settlement or a jury verdict.
If you were rear-ended and injured in Nashville, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.