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Rear-end collisions account for roughly one-third of all motor vehicle accidents. These types of accidents happen more often when there is heavy traffic, bad weather (e.g., rain, snow, ice, sleet, etc.), road construction, and other adverse conditions. Rear-end crashes occur when the front end of the trailing vehicle collides into the back end of the lead vehicle. Usually, these collisions only involve two vehicles. However, there are some instances when it becomes a multi-car accident as one vehicle is bumped into another, then into another, creating a domino effect.

Some rear-end wrecks result from vehicles colliding at high speeds, which can cause serious and catastrophic injuries. More often, rear-end accidents happen at lower speeds. These are commonly known as “fender benders”. Even at a lower speed, those involved in the collision can sustain moderate to severe injuries. It is often presumed that a rear-end crash is the fault of the trailing driver, because they the one that initiates the collision, and they are generally best able to see the danger. This is not true in all cases, however. If you or a loved one has been injured in a rear-end collision, it is important to speak with a seasoned auto accident attorney, so you understand your rights and options.

At the Gardner Law Firm, we have four decades of experience representing clients injured in rear-end wrecks and all other types of motor vehicle accidents in Mississippi. Experience has shown us that even a seemingly minor incident (such as a fender-bender) can cause a major disruption in the lives of those who are involved. We work closely with our clients, taking the time to thoroughly investigate their case and exploring every potential legal avenue toward recovering full and fair compensation. We handle the legal process for you from beginning to end, so you can focus on recovering from your injury and moving forward with your life.

Common Causes of Rear-End Wrecks

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NTHSA) reports that just under two million motor vehicle accidents in United States are rear-end collisions, and over half a million individuals are injured in these types of accidents. There are several reasons why rear-end crashes happen, some of the most common include:

  • Following too closely: Tailgating is one of the leading causes of rear-end accidents. When someone is following another car too closely, they may not have time to stop if the other car suddenly slows down due to heavier traffic or another reason. People sometimes tailgate because they are in a hurry and looking to pass the car in front of them. Other times, they drive aggressively for no valid reason. Either way, this type of driving heightens the chances of a rear-end wreck.
  • Driving recklessly: Tailgating is one possible form of aggressive or reckless driving that can lead to a rear-end collision. Other examples include speeding excessively (generally 15 to 20 MPH or more over the speed limit), weaving from one lane to the other, turning out sharply in front of an oncoming car, failure to yield the right of way, and many others.
  • Distracted driving: Motorists have always had distractions, but the problem has become far worse with the widespread use of smartphones. Activities such as texting while driving are extremely dangerous, because they distract drivers visually, manually, and cognitively. When a driver is looking down at their cell phone, it is very easy to take their eye off the road and fail to notice traffic slowing down in front of them.
  • Drowsy/fatigued driving: An alarming number of drivers get behind the wheel while they are drowsy or fatigued. This happens because of not getting enough sleep, working long hours, driving for too many hours, or a combination of these and other factors. When a driver is drowsy and falling asleep at the wheel, they may not see that the car in front of them has slowed down until it is too late. Drowsy and fatigued driving is a common problem with commercial truck drivers.
  • Drunk driving: The use of alcohol or drugs before getting behind the wheel can be a deadly combination. Motorists who are chemically impaired tend to make very poor driving decisions. Some get very sleepy, while others drive recklessly and have willful and wanton disregard for the rules of the road and the safety of others.
  • Faulty breaking systems: Some rear-end crashes happen because of brakes that are worn or defective. When the brakes are bad, it becomes harder to slow down, particularly at higher speeds. When brake pads, rotors, and other related parts start showing their wear, car owners have a duty to get them replaced to help ensure the safety of themselves and others on the road. If the crash is due to a defective auto part, however, this could be the fault of the manufacturer, supplier, or distributor of the faulty part.

As mentioned earlier, even a lower impact crash can cause moderate to severe injuries. One of the most common injuries that is known as “whiplash.” Whiplash happens from the force at impact, which throws your body back and forth, causing soft tissue injuries in the neck, back, and spinal cord.

Auto accident injuries are not always noticed right away, it can sometimes take several hours or even a few days for the symptoms to start showing up. This is why it is always a good idea to get checked out by a medical professional immediately after a motor vehicle accident, even one that seems minor. If you wait too long before seeking medical help, the insurance company may claim that your injuries are not related to the accident, or that you did not take reasonable steps to minimize the negative effects of your injury. After a motor vehicle accident, seek medical attention right away, then get in touch with a knowledgeable accident injury lawyer to ensure that your legal rights are preserved.

Contact the Experienced Mississippi Personal Injury Attorneys at The Gardner Law Firm

Rear-end collisions may not seem like a big deal, but they can still result in significant recoverable damages. At the Gardner Law Firm, we have in-depth knowledge of personal injury law, and we have a successful track record with even the most complex cases. Our clients are our top priority, and we work tirelessly to obtain maximum compensation on their behalf. If you have been injured in a rear-end wreck in Biloxi, Pascagoula, or anywhere along Mississippi’s Gulf Coast, call our office today at 228-436-6555 for a free consultation with one of our attorneys. You may also send us a message through our online contact form. We handle all personal injury cases on a contingency basis – you only pay attorney fees if we win your case

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