Who’s at Fault in a Rear-End Collision?
In 2017, approximately 22 percent of all car accidents in Pennsylvania were rear-end collisions. Most people think these types of accidents are very minor, and involve mainly fender benders. Unfortunately, people can become seriously injured. Whiplash is a very common injury seen after rear-end collisions, and it can take someone weeks, or even months, to recover from it.
When that is the case and someone is seriously hurt, they’ll want to know who was at fault in a rear-end collision. Determining this is sometimes the only way to collect compensation from an insurance company, or the at-fault driver.
Common Causes of Rear-End Collisions
A rear-end collision occurs when the front of one vehicle strikes the back of the vehicle in front of it. There are many common causes for these types of accidents. Often, the driver of the vehicle behind another is distracted. Drowsy driving is another common cause of rear-end collisions. Reckless behavior behind the wheel, such as speeding and road rage, can also easily cause a rear-end collision.
Rear-end collisions often occur in stop-and-go traffic. This is due to the fact that drivers are constantly moving forward, and then stopping. With these road conditions, it’s easy for a driver to fail to brake and hit the vehicle in front of them. Distraction is a factor in this type of accident, as well. A driver may take their foot off the brake for a moment to inch forward, look down at something such as the radio, and fail to stop in time.
Liability in a Rear-End Collision
Like all car accidents, insurance companies and the courts will try to determine who was liable for the accident. To do this, they will consider which driver acted negligently, or carelessly.
Many drivers assume that in a rear-end collision, the second driver that crashed into another is to blame. This is not always true. Sometimes the driver in the first vehicle may slam on their brakes and come to a sudden stop, leaving the driver behind them no time to stop.
However, in most cases, the driver of the second vehicle is found at fault. This is due to the fact that the insurance company and the courts will determine the second vehicle was following too closely. If the driver had provided more room in between their car and the vehicle in front of them, they could have avoided an accident. For this reason, when someone is seriously hurt as a result of a rear-end collision, the driver of the second vehicle is usually found liable.
Been in a Car Crash? Call Our Pennsylvania Car Accident Attorneys
If you’ve been in a rear-end collision, you need to speak to a Scranton auto accident attorney. At Haggerty, Hinton & Cosgrove, LLP, we will explain Pennsylvania’s complicated insurance laws, and hold liable parties accountable for paying the compensation you are owed. Call us today at 570-354-5205 or contact us online to schedule a meeting with one of our attorneys.