The Bronx is number one in many ways. It serves as home to the nation’s most popular baseball team, the country’s largest zoo…and some of the world’s worst traffic. Car accidents occur in the Bronx every day, and a great many of these take the form of rear-end collisions.
A little knowledge can go a long way toward protecting yourself against a crash while navigating Bronx traffic. Here’s everything you need to know about why rear-end collisions happen in the Bronx, who’s to blame for them, and how to avoid finding yourself at the center of one.
Rear-End Collisions Can Be Fatal
Understanding rear-end collisions in the Bronx begins with examining the data. No one would choose to be in a car accident, but rear-end collisions have a reputation as one of the “safer” types of accidents. Most of us would prefer a rear-end collision over another type of car accident, such as a head-on collision or a roll-over.
Statistics show that the majority of rear-end collisions occur when the leading car is stopped. However, that doesn’t mean a rear-end collision can’t be fatal.
In fact, the Insurance Information Institute (III) reports that rear-end collisions are the third-most fatal type of car accident involving a collision with a moving vehicle. In 2019, rear-end collisions resulted in 2,346 deaths across the U.S.
Distracted Driving and Collisions in the Bronx
It’s well known that distracted driving is a leading cause of car accidents. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that 15% of collisions occur due to driver distraction.
Car accidents are the leading cause of injury-related death in New York. The New York City Police Department (NYPD) keeps close tabs on accidents across the city.
The NYPD collision report for April 2022 offers insight into the leading causes of accidents in each borough. Across the city, distracted driving is by far the leading cause of accidents. In the Bronx alone, 374 accidents involved distracted driving in April 2022 — and a large portion of these involved rear-end collisions.
What Causes Rear-End Collisions in the Bronx?
We know that rear-end collisions occur most often in stopped or slow-moving traffic, and that distracted driving is often a contributing factor. However, glancing down at a cell phone while approaching a red light is by no means the only way a rear-end collision can occur.
Some of the other leading circumstances that contribute to the likelihood of a rear-end collision in the Bronx include:
- Following too closely
- Reckless driving
- Weather conditions
- Drowsy driving
- Driving under the influence
- Poor vehicle maintenance
Rear-end collisions happen every day. And just like any type of accident, a wide range of circumstances can bring them about. So when it happens to you, who’s at fault?
Who’s at Fault in a Bronx Rear-End Collision?
New York state law generally assumes that the rear driver is liable in a rear-end collision. The following driver is expected to remain vigilant and maintain a safe distance from the car in front.
However, rear-end collisions are unique because there are some circumstances in which fault can be placed upon the leading driver. For example, if the lead vehicle’s brake lights were not working, the driver can be shown to share some fault for the accident.
It’s rare in New York for the rear driver to completely avoid liability in a rear-end collision. The one exception is if emergency circumstances made a car accident unavoidable. However, this must be proven in court, which can be a challenge.
The safest way to avoid responsibility in a rear-end collision is to avoid such an accident altogether by driving at a safe distance and free of distractions.
Contact Our Car Accident Law Firm in Bronx, NY
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