The tail-end—or rear-end—crash is the most common type of car crash. As of 2017, 2,456 of all collisions were tail-end episodes. These crashes are so common, in fact, that the government has separate data sets for analyzing them.
When you’re starting out when learning how to drive, a lot of us bank on YouTube videos and word-of-mouth advice from fellow drivers. And if there’s one thing everyone will tell you to be wary of, it’s tail-end accidents.
A tail-end collision—or a shunt as the British call it—refers to when a car rams into another in front of it. The blame generally lies on the car that hits from behind, because if you could have braked, you should have braked.
Depending on the impact, a tail-end accident varies in intensity. At times, when the driver manages to brake but still scrapes the car in front, the damage is limited to slight scratches, and some agreement is ultimately reached. At other times, the collision is so mighty that both cars are majorly dented. There’s also a lot of bickering—and in the worst-case scenario, personal injuries.
Tail-end accidents aren’t just car crashes—they can also be terrible and can cause a great deal of damage: both financial and legal.
The Major Reasons For These Accidents
Several factors could lead to a tail-end collision, but it all comes down to the driver not braking in time. The most common causes include:
- Distraction: Distracted driving, or inattention, due to talking or using a phone, are often why a driver fails to brake in time, because they didn’t notice that the car in front stopped moving.
- Tailgating: We all hate tailgating, and for good reason. Tailgaters are those annoying testosterone-pumped macho nincompoops who keep coming close to you in an attempt to overtake you.If you brake or slow down, it can lead to them ramming into you. Luckily for you, it’s now time to drag the annoying tailgater to a station and get compensation for the damages you suffered.
- Panic stops: At times, when two cars are moving at the same speed, the car in the front might have to brake suddenly, due to a panicked stop or a misunderstanding. This could lead to a tail-end accident if the driver behind the car doesn’t brake in time.
- Not indicating: If the car in the front fails to indicate they’re going to turn left/right, you might continue at the same speed and ram into them because you weren’t expecting them to turn. There’s equal blame on both sides in this case.
You can prevent accidents like this one by following the two golden rules of driving: keep your distance (we all know how important social distancing is these days, don’t we?) and be alert.