Many Tennessee auto accidents could be avoided if drivers kept to a safe following distance behind other vehicles on the road. While some rear-end collisions may be the minor accidents often referred to as “fender benders,” others can cause serious damage to property as well as catastrophic injuries. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), failure to maintain a safe distance from other cars is a leading cause of this type of traffic accident. When cars don’t stay away from those ahead, they may be unable to stop in time in case of an emergency or even a traffic light turning red.
The National Safety Council recommends that vehicles keep three seconds of distance between each other. This is typically enough time for each driver to react to problems ahead and avoid a damaging car crash. However, it is also important that drivers remain attentive. When a too-close following distance is combined with texting while driving or other distracted behaviors, the results can be catastrophic. It is far too easy to go three seconds with hands, eyes and mind away from the wheel and the road. This three-second time should be expanded depending on the weather conditions, as heavy rain, ice or fog can make it more difficult to stop in time.
By staying away from cars ahead, drivers can also help to prevent tailgating. Tailgating is often itself illegal and is considered a form of aggressive driving. Many incidents of road rage are linked to tailgating, putting people at risk.
When drivers fail to follow the rules of the road, others may face the consequences in the form of a severe motor vehicle accident. A personal injury lawyer may help accident victims to seek compensation for their losses.