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Rear-End Crash Risks Chicago Drivers Need to Understand

February 27, 2015

Rear-end collisions account for many collisions in Chicago, Hyde Park, Bridgeport, Edgewater, Lincoln Park and surrounding areas, and rear-end accidents are the cause of approximately a third of all reported accidents within the United States. Rear-end collisions also account for 11.8 percent of multi-vehicle fatal accidents and are the most common collision type at signalized intersections. Because these crashes are so common, numerous studies have been done on the causes of crashes as well as on ways to prevent those accidents.

A personal injury lawyer knows that understanding the reasons why accidents happen is a good first step towards developing important accident prevention efforts. A comprehensive study published by the University of Central Florida College of Engineering can shed some important light on these common types of collisions.

Facts On Rear-End Crashes

Understanding rear-end crashes involves understanding both the behavior of the leading vehicle that is struck, as well as the rear vehicle that is the striking vehicle. Factors that are important in evaluating the risk of rear-end accidents include the driver, the vehicle type, and the roadway environment, all of which can affect both the likelihood of a rear-end accident as well as the severity of the crash.

The study found that age and gender are material characteristics that can have an impact on whether a rear-end crash will occur, as well as on a driver’s role in that collision. For example, older drivers generally process information more slowly and are slower to act than younger drivers, which can create a heightened degree of risk when older motorists are faced with two or more choices at intersections. Younger drivers, especially those under 25, however, are more likely to be aggressive and inattentive. The result of this is that older drivers tend to be the ones who get struck in rear-end crashes more often than they are the ones who strike others.

Differences between vehicles were also a big issue in determining whether rear-end accidents were likely to happen or not. This is not only because some cars are slower to brake than others, but also because the size of the leading vehicle will impact the behavior of the rear driver. Drivers of passenger cars tend to leave less space between their own vehicle and a light truck than between their vehicle and a passenger car. The dimensions of the lead vehicle make an impact because the more likely it is that a driver can see through, over or around the lead car, the longer and safer the following distance that driver will leave.

The road environment conditions that play a role in whether rear-end accidents are likely to occur include lighting conditions; highway characteristics; traffic volume; and road surface condition. Heavy traffic volume, for example, results in smaller gaps between leading and following vehicles, thus increasing the crash risk.

Motorists need to be aware of these different things that impact the likelihood of a rear-end crash, and should be aware of how their own behavior and subconscious attitudes towards driving can affect the chances that they will become involved in a crash.

A Chicago, IL accident attorney can help after an injury. Call Coplan + Crane at 800-394-6002 to schedule your free consultation. Serving Chicago, Hyde Park, Bridgeport, Edgewater, Lincoln Park and surrounding areas.