A rear-end collision occurs when the front end of one auto smashes into the rear end of another vehicle. Although these crashes often occur at busy intersections where the cars are traveling at a slower speed, victims can suffer serious injuries, such as whiplash, broken bones, traumatic brain injuries, and spinal cord injuries.
If you were hurt in a rear-end collision, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries from the at-fault driver’s insurance company. Even though liability may be easier to prove, the insurance adjuster could raise disputes to try to pay you less damages than you deserve. At Griffen & Stevens Law Firm, PLLC, our experienced personal injury lawyers understand the tactics that the insurance company may employ and will aggressively fight so that you obtain the maximum recovery in your settlement.
Common Causes of Rear-End Crashes
Rear-end collisions are one of the most common types of car accidents in Flagstaff and Northern Arizona. Victims must determine the cause of the crash in order to prove the other driver’s negligence in causing it in order to be entitled to compensation for their injuries. It is essential to retain a knowledgeable attorney who can conduct an extensive investigation into how the accident occurred and collect the evidence necessary to prove the at-fault motorist’s liability. Here are common causes of these crashes:
- Speeding. When a driver is speeding, it will take them longer to slow down and stop. They may not have sufficient time to do this if they did not realize the traffic light turned red or the driver in front had to slow down or stop quickly to avoid a wreck.
- Distracted driving. If a driver is engaged in distracted driving, such as talking on a cell phone, texting, or eating and drinking, their eyes are not on the road, and their mind is not on their driving. This dramatically increases the risk that they will not realize that they are dangerously close to the rear end of the vehicle in front of them before it is too late to avoid a rear-end collision.
- Intoxication. Driving after consuming alcohol or drugs can impair a person’s reaction time, judgement, and vision. This increases the chances of engaging in reckless driving practices, such as excessive speeding, tailgating, weaving between lanes, and rear-end another car.
- Not driving for the weather. Drivers must slow down—even below the posted speed limit if necessary—when snow, rain, fog, or ice makes driving more dangerous. If they fail to do so, they could slide into another auto’s rear-end and may even cause a multi-vehicle collision.
- Following too closely. Under Arizona law, all motorists are required to maintain a safe distance from the vehicle in front of them. They cannot follow closer than is reasonable, while taking into account the speed of the auto in front of them and traffic conditions on a road or highway. In many rear-end collisions, this basic traffic law is violated.
Who Is Liable in a Rear-End Collision?
In most cases, the driver in the rear would be the negligent party in a rear-end car accident. This is because it is assumed that their failure to maintain a safe distance prevented them from having sufficient time to slow down or stop. Because of this presumption, you may have an easier time proving their liability and have a stronger claim for compensation.
However, there are exceptions to the general rule that the driver in the rear caused a rear-end collision. The motorist in the front may be found to be at fault in these situations:
- They suddenly stopped for no reason.
- They put their vehicle in reverse.
- They suddenly put on their brakes or slowed down to make a turn without using their turn signal.
- They made a quick lane change without using their turn signals or by pulling in front of a vehicle when it was unsafe to do so.
- They drove their vehicle with non-working brakes.
- They failed to put on their hazard lights when their car was broken down, and they needed to drive slower than the speed limit.
Contact Our Flagstaff Attorneys for the Legal Assistance You Need
If you were injured in a rear-end collision in Flagstaff or Northern Arizona, our dedicated personal injury lawyers can explain your options to you, collect the evidence you need to win your case, and fight with the insurance company so that you receive the compensation you deserve for your injuries. We handle these cases on a contingency fee basis so that you only owe us attorney fees when we settle your claim. To learn more about how we can assist you, call our Flagstaff office or start a live chat to schedule your free consultation today.