Car accidents, specifically rear-end collisions, are a regular occurrence on the streets and highways of New York City. And it is a sad fact that drivers and passengers often suffer injuries as a result, and sometimes these injuries can be life-altering. It takes no time at all for an unfocused driver to cause a collision that can having serious and lasting effects on others.
It is essential for all drivers and passengers to be aware of the common causes of rear-end collisions:
• Tailgating – This is the leading cause of rear end accidents. According to research by the Highways’ Agency, tailgating is a contributing factor in more than one third of all accidents on the road.
• Distracted driving – It’s easy to understand that with the ubiquity of personal, hand-held devices, it is possible for a driver to shift focus from the doldrums of traffic to a texting conversation via cell phone.
• Excessive speed and/or reckless driving – We’ve all seen the impatient driver who drives much faster than everyone else, weaving in and out of traffic. Tailgating is often a part of this behavior. It is very dangerous and can frequently result in a rear end collision, particularly when the other drivers become panicked or fearful.
• Driver fatigue – The single parent rushing from job, to kids, to home; the student studying all day and delivering pizzas at night; the new kid in town participating in a vehicle-for-hire service, such as Uber or Lyft, to make ends meet; the aging baby boomer still working long hours and driving home late at night. These are just a few examples of causes of driver fatigue, which is more common than you might think.
• Impairment from alcohol or drugs – Too often careless drivers drive inebriated beyond the legal limit, impairing their judgment and ability to operate a vehicle. The results can be devastating.
• Vehicle defects – Though less common, defects such as malfunctioning brakes, steering components, or other mechanical or electrical issues in cars and trucks can lead to collisions.
• Inclement weather – Anyone who has driven in New York City knows that severe weather conditions can greatly affect vehicle operation. Even the best of drivers can briefly slide their car on a patch of ice, or be temporarily blinded by torrential rain.
If you or someone you love is the victim of a rear-end collision in New York, the first step is to seek expert medical attention. The second most important step is contacting experienced legal help. The team at Wingate, Russotti, Shapiro & Halperin, LLP is ready to use our insider knowledge to get you the help you need. Call us at (212) 986- 7353.