Rear-end collisions make up many of the nation’s traffic accidents. However, there are different causes of the common rear-end collision. Distracted, drowsy or impaired driving is often to blame. Driving too fast for conditions, speeding and following too closely are other common causes of such accidents.
Road Rage and Rear-end Collisions
Sometimes, however, road rage causes a rear-end wreck. A common example is when an enraged motorist pulls in front of another vehicle before slamming on their brakes. If a rear-end collision ensues, the following motorist may claim that the extreme conduct of the aggressive driver was at fault. However, as long as that aggressive driver is operating a vehicle with operative brake lights, it can be difficult to divert blame off the following driver for not being able to stop in time.
Intent and Witness Statements
However, the leading motorist’s ill intent can shift the blame if witness statements identify it. That is, an investigation may reveal evidence that the braking driver intended to cause problems for the following motorist. If you are in a rear-end collision attributable to road rage, it is ideal if another motorist or pedestrian stops to provide officers with a corroborating statement.
In some cases, such statements can lead to the aggressive driver being cited or charged with reckless driving. In an extreme case, the motorist who engages in such dangerous conduct might be charged with assault with a deadly weapon, although such a charge is rare and often difficult to prove.
However, if no witness offers such a statement, the law ultimately requires that the following motorist stop their vehicle in time. So, the following motorist is generally found to be at fault in the many such rear-end collisions.
Avoiding Aggressive Drivers
When another driver experiences and exhibits symptoms of road rage, it is important to get away from the aggravated motorist. Do not continue to follow a motorist exhibiting such erratic behavior. Change lanes, exit, pull onto the shoulder or turn on to another road. Report any motorist that repeats such dangerous and aggressive actions with a 911 call. Be sure to include pertinent information like the make/model of the vehicle, the tag number and the direction of travel.