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Stopping distances can lead to rear-end accidents

On Behalf of | Apr 9, 2024 | Car Accidents

Many rear-end accidents are caused by tailgaters. They simply do not leave enough space – as a general rule, there should always be three seconds between cars – and so they can’t stop in time. But these drivers may not even realize they are tailgating until the moment of the collision, when they can’t bring the vehicle to a halt.

This is why it is so important to consider stopping distances. On average, a normal passenger car takes about 300 feet to come to a stop. This is about the length of a football field.

But there are certain factors that can influence the stopping distance. For one thing, is the driver distracted? If they don’t react quickly, it is going to take a much greater distance to stop. Is the car in good condition? If the brakes haven’t been maintained, that can also increase the stopping distances. 

The role of large vehicles

The third factor to consider is simply the size of the vehicle itself. For instance, a semi-truck may need 525 feet to come to a stop, rather than 300. So if the driver of a passenger car begins braking at the exact same second as the driver of a semi-truck, that semi-truck driver may cause a rear-end crash that could otherwise have been avoided. The issue is simply that semi-trucks weigh so much compared to passenger cars. A standard car may weigh around 4,000 pounds, while a semi-truck could weigh up to 80,000 pounds when it is fully loaded.

Seeking compensation

Have you been rear-ended by a negligent driver and suffered serious injuries? If so, you need to know what steps to take to seek proper financial compensation for medical bills and other costs.