How to Avoid Rear-end Car Accidents (and What to Do if You’re in One)

Rear-end accident

Coral Springs: A rear-end collision is usually the easiest and most straightforward claim against an insurance company and an at-fault driver. Under Florida law, if a vehicle gets rear-ended, there is a presumption of negligence (fault) on the person who rear-ends the lead vehicle. This means that the vehicle driver that rear ends the front vehicle is almost always at fault. Although it is rare, here are some examples of when this presumption can be rebutted, or challenged:

  • If the lead vehicle stopped for absolutely no reason.
  • The driver of the lead vehicle was smoking a cigarette and dropped it on their lap, causing them to slam on their brakes.
  • The driver of the lead vehicle was under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and were driving recklessly, changing lanes, and slammed on their brakes unexpectedly.
  • The rear ending driver had a sudden unexpected medical incident such as a stroke, seizure or the like, and that person before the accident was fine to drive.
  • Sudden brake failure--in other words, there was no problem with the breaks, the vehicle was properly maintained, and all a sudden maybe because of a product defect, the brakes fail

In most rear-end collisions, the insurance company generally admits fault. Even if the case goes to trial, the attorney representing the insurance company and the at-fault driver will admit usually admit fault. This is because the insurance company lawyer doesn’t want the jury to focus on the conduct of the at-fault driver. Rather, the attorney representing the at-fault driver wants the jury to focus only on the injured person claiming damages. And, to some extent, admitting fault sometimes makes the at-fault driver look like the ‘good guy’.

What You Can Do to Help Avoid Getting Rear-ended

Believe it or not, there are things you can do to help avoid being rear-ended.

  1. Keep an eye on your rear-view mirror. If you see a driver coming up behind you quickly, hit your horn as long and hard as you can.
  1. Speed up safely and cautiously. If there is another vehicle riding too close to you and you can speed up safely without causing an accident or violating any laws, then you should do so in order to get away from that vehicle behind you.
  1. Use hand signals. Remember those signals from Driver’s Ed? If you see a vehicle stopped ahead, or a driver in your rearview mirror coming up behind you really quickly, reach your left arm out the window, and wave your arm up and down to attract the driver’s attention.
  1. Change lanes safely. If the driver behind you is following you too closely, safely move over to another lane (again, if and when it is safe to do so).
  1. Don't drive too close to the vehicle in front of you. This way, if a vehicle in front of you stops suddenly or slows suddenly, you potentially have more time to do the things above, and more room to stop slowly. That's because a sudden stop by you certainly increases the chance of you being rear-ended. So if you allow more space in front of you, you can slow over a longer period of time, and do some of the things that we are recommending above

What You Can Do to Avoid a Rear-end Accident

  1. Avoid following too closely. There are different rules for how many car lengths you should keep between you and the car in front of you. This depends on your speed and even your age. The bottom line is to be more cautious and pay attention to the distance between you and the car in front of you should you need to brake abruptly.
  2. Pay attention! Do not drive distracted, such as texting and driving or fiddling with your radio.
  3. Avoid distractions. If your child is crying and it is distracting you, then pull over and try to calm him or her down.

Where to Find a Rear-end Accident Attorney in Coral Springs, FL

If you are rear-ended, call us right away. Even before you call your insurance company. The Law Offices Cytryn & Velazquez, P.A. specializes in handling all types of vehicle accident cases, including motorcycle accidents, bicycle accidents, pedestrian accidents, and of course, rear-end car accidents. We serve the areas surrounding Coral Springs, Lauderhill, Lauderdale Lakes, Plantation, Sunrise, and of course all of Broward County and we are authorized to practice law and handle cases anywhere in the State of Florida. For your convenience, you don’t need to come to our office. Although we are happy to meet you in our office, we can do all signups remotely and of course all of our cases are handled on a contingency fee basis where we only get paid when you get paid.

If you or a loved one were recently involved in a rear-end car accident, call our office today for a free consultation at 954-833-1440.