Rear-end collisions are common in Pennsylvania and in the United States. According to 2011 Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) statistics, 22.2 percent of reportable accidents in the state were rear-end collisions. Recent statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) show that rear-end collisions account for 28 percent of crashes nationwide. While these statistics paint a grim picture, many rear-end collisions are preventable by adhering to the following guidelines:
- Allow plenty of space between your vehicle and the lead car so that you have time to slow down or stop safely.
- Use caution when changing lanes to make sure you do not cut off another driver and cause them to rear-end your vehicle.
- Keep your brake lights and taillights clean and in good working order.
- Continue to press the brake pedal once you stop at an intersection or in traffic so that cars can easily see your brake lights.
- Communicate with other drivers by signaling your turns and tapping your brakes when you intend to stop.
- Brake smoothly to give drivers behind you plenty of time to stop.
- Keep up with traffic in your lane to prevent drivers from following you too closely.
- Check your mirrors often to ensure other drivers are not following too closely. If they are, change lanes to let them pass as soon as you can do so safely.
By following the simple strategies listed above, drivers can prevent many rear-end collisions. Unfortunately, no matter how careful you are, you cannot control the actions of another driver. If you have been rear-ended and suffered a head, neck or other serious injury, contact a knowledgeable Harrisburg car crash attorney at Schmidt Kramer to discuss your legal options. The toll-free number is (888) 476-0807 and the case review is free. You may also wish to download a free copy of our book Who Pays the Bills When You Are Injured in an Automobile Accident? for more information.