What happens if/when someone hits you from the back? While rear-end collisions are a common occurrence both on the road and parking lots, very few people seek compensation for damages. You, however, are entitled to compensation – as long as you weren’t at fault. You’ll, however, require the services of a good auto accident lawyer in Tampa to help file the claim. We at Winters & Yonker can help fight for your rights and see to it that you are compensated for any damage or injuries caused.
A rear-end collision can be defined as an accident whereby someone drives into/hits the back of another car. These accidents occur if the driver fails to keep a safe/clear distance between him/her and the vehicle in front. While most of these accidents are considered minor (fender benders), they can still inflict severe damage (to the car) and/or injuries (to the victim). The at-fault driver should, therefore, be held responsible for the damage and any other expenses arising as a result of the accident.
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The Most Common Causes of Rear-End Auto Accidents
Tailgating or driving too close to the car in front is one of the most common causes of rear-end crashes. Such is common in stop-and-go traffic. Other factors, such as driving under the influence, texting, and driving, or absentmindedness, can cause such an accident as well. Some of these accidents happen if one tries to eat something or put on makeup while behind the wheel. Trying to tune the car stereo can also cause one to lose focus hence rear-end the car in front. Other causes of rear-ending include:
- Road rage
- Over speeding
- Driving when fatigued
- Slippery roads
- Drunk driving
- Mechanical failure
- Bad weather.
Rear-end collisions are common in rush-hour traffic, tightly-packed city streets, and where many vehicles are passing a tight spot.
What Are the Most Common Injuries from Rear-End Crashes?
Most injuries from rear-end collisions aren’t as fatal as rollover accidents and head-on crashes. For this reason, most people will ignore the slight injuries hence choose to go on with life. Some of these crashes can, however, have a significant impact on your well-being in the long run. Some of the common forms of injuries in rear-end crashes include:
Whiplash is very common in rear-end collisions where the neck and head are jerked forward suddenly and violently. This causes soft tissue injuries, which can be debilitating.
The sudden movement may exert lots of pressure on the spine and especially discs in the lower back (spinal column), causing them to shift out of alignment. This causes intense lower back pains which can last for weeks or even months.
Traumatic Brain Injury
The sudden movement may lead to partial or complete paralysis, loss of consciousness, concussion, bruising, swelling, and lacerations in/around the brain.
Depending on the intensity of the impact, one could break a leg or arm from the force. While this may not seem like much, such injuries can make it almost impossible for one to perform daily tasks with ease. Other risks, such as incorrectly fused bones, disfigurements, and lifelong deformity, may arise from this.
It’s common for the driver/passengers to hit their face on the dashboard, steering wheel, etc. from the impact. One might also sustain scaring when the airbag is deployed. It may take specialized facial/cosmetic surgery to correct this problem, which again requires money and long-term medical attention.
How Does Fault Work in Rear-End Collision Cases?
The legal system in Florida operates under rebuttable presumption. The law considers the car at the back to be at fault unless the driver shows proof that his/her actions didn’t cause the accident. In other words, you are virtually not at fault if someone rear-enders you. The law doesn’t take into consideration why the driver at the front stopped.
In addition to this, pure comparative fault is applied for car accident cases in Florida. This means the court can establish the percentage at which the victim was responsible for the accident as well. If there’s proof that you had a 20% fault, it is then possible that you’ll receive 20% less in compensation.
Rear-End Collision Statistics
If you have been on the road for long enough, you are then quite familiar with fender benders. These are the most common types of auto accidents in the US. Outlined below are several statistics on rear-end collisions in the United States alone.
- About 1.7 million cases of rear-end collisions are reported every year in the United States. More than 500,000 people are hurt in these accidents, with around 17,000 losing their lives from the same.
- About 80% of these accidents could have been avoided using collision avoidance systems found in some cars. Most cars do not, however, have these systems installed.
- 87% of all fender benders occur because the driver wasn’t attentive on the road. Distracted driving is the leading cause of rear-end collisions today.
- Half of all recorded accidents (between 2012 and 2014) involving two vehicles were fender benders.
Hire A Tampa Rear-End Crash Attorney for Expert Assistance
You are required to seek medical attention if involved in a road accident. You (the driver) are also required to document any form of damage to the car and injuries on yourself and passengers, as well as provide insurance statements after the accident. These will be required to prove your case and help file a claim for compensation.
Calling your attorney while at the accident scene can help make your case as well. We at Winters & Yonker will dispatch our attorneys to the accident scene to help collect evidence and talk to witnesses. The lawyers will record everything from traffic conditions, time of the day, and the weather to determine if the other driver was at fault. He/she will advise you on the best way forward based on the findings on sight. If the accident was due to the other driver’s carelessness and negligence, we will help file the claim on your behalf.
We offer a free first consultation to all potential clients. You can, therefore, book an appointment with us for a no-cost case evaluation and advice on the way forward. Our team of experienced auto accident lawyers is familiar with the due process required to file a claim, as well as calculate the maximum amount possible for the same (in compensation).
Whatever your decision is, never make a statement with the insurance company, or take any offer they give to you in the name of compensation without a lawyer present. Insurance companies will look to offer the minimal amount possible for the damages while pocketing the larger chunk. A good attorney should help you get full compensation for all damages. Get in touch with us today for help with rear-end collision cases.