Peter Diiorio: Experienced New Orleans Rear-End Accident Attorney
What is a Rear-End Accident, and How Do These Accidents Occur?
Rear-end accidents are extremely common—in fact, they are the single most common type of traffic collision throughout the nation. The National Transportation Safety Board estimates that almost half of all two-vehicle accidents are rear-end collisions. According to the most recent data from the LSU Center for Analytics & Research in Transportation, in 2021, there were 14,766 rear-end collisions in the state of Louisiana that caused injury and 106 fatalities from rear-end accidents across the state. A rear-end collision occurs when one vehicle collides directly into the vehicle in front of it.
New Orleans Rear-end accidents happen when:
- The driver in the rear is not paying attention, perhaps neglecting to notice a slow-down of traffic.
- The driver in the rear is tailgating or following too closely.
- There is inclement weather resulting in poor road conditions, and one or both drivers fail to take that into account, usually when the driver in the rear is driving too fast for the road conditions and/or following too closely.
- Hard braking is engaged in by the driver in the front, usually with little warning for the driver in the rear.
- The driver in the rear accelerates too quickly for the distance between their car and the car in front.
- Poor visibility can lead to rear-end collisions, particularly when the driver in the rear is driving too fast for the visibility conditions or the driver in the front unexpectedly stops.
- Distracted driving could be the number one cause of rear-end accidents. The driver in the rear may be eating, texting, talking on their phone, or turning around to see what the children are doing in the back seat. When the driver takes their eyes off the road for only a few seconds, a rear-end collision can occur.
- Either driver could be impaired, overly fatigued, or driving recklessly or carelessly.
According to the NHTSA, approximately 87 percent of rear-end crashes involved some type of driver distraction. In at least 47 percent of those rear-end crashes caused by driver distraction, the driver in the rear showed no discernable crash-avoidance response, like braking or steering to one side or the other. This suggests the drivers were unaware of the imminent crash because they were distracted.
If you were injured in a rear-end crash in which the driver that hit you from behind was distracted or otherwise negligent, having a New Orleans rear-end accident attorney from New Orleans Legal will fight for your rights. Attorney J. Diiorio understands that a rear-end accident can leave you injured, unable to work, and facing financial devastation. We will handle the legal side of your accident, letting you take the time you need to heal from your injuries.
What Are the Most Common Injuries Following a Rear-End Accident?
The impact of the collision causes force and movement to the body, causing it to jerk forward violently, then “snap” backward. If you are restrained by the seat belt tension, your head and neck may be the only parts of your body impacted. If you are not restrained, your body may hit the steering wheel, dashboard, or airbag (if one deploys). An airbag and safety belt place less force on your body than when your body, limbs, face, and head hit the steering wheel or dashboard. The violent snap your head and neck can make during a rear-end collision can cause soft tissue damage like whiplash—or even more serious spinal cord injuries.
When the front driver is hit with sufficient force, fatal injuries can result when the force of the impact leads to internal bleeding or internal organ damage. The accident victim’s brain may also sustain life-threatening injuries either due to the sudden, violent motion or caused when the victim’s head collides with a hard surface inside the vehicle. In rare cases, a forceful rear-end collision can even sever the spinal cord, potentially leading to paralysis or causing death.
Even a low-speed rear-end collision can cause chronic, debilitating, or life-threatening injuries. Some of the most common injuries suffered by victims of rear-end collisions include:
Neck, back, and spinal injuries
Whiplash is common following a rear-end accident, as are injuries to the spinal discs that cushion the vertebrae. A herniated disc injury can trigger chronic pain, while other spinal injuries can cause numbness, weakness, or paralysis.
Arm, hand, and wrist injuries
Are also common, including sprains, strains, and broken bones resulting from the individual attempting to use their hands and arms to brace against the impact.
Can be caused by seat belts or even airbags, and knee fractures are common when the knees hit the dashboard.
Can occur when the face hits a hard surface in the vehicle, when the airbag hits the individual in the face (for shorter adults or children, in particular), or when flying glass hits the face. Facial lacerations can result in scarring and disfigurement, which, in turn, can lead to emotional pain and trauma.
Penetrating head injuries
Can occur in a rear-end accident when shards of glass or other flying debris strike the head (usually in a higher speed rear-end collision, but not always), and concussions or traumatic brain injuries can occur when the brain is violently bounced around inside the hard skull or when the head strikes a hard surface.
Internal organ damage and severe internal bleeding
Can occur from a particularly forceful rear-end accident.
What Should I Do Following a New Orleans Rear-End Accident?
As with any automobile accident, the first thing you should do is ensure everyone involved in the accident—including yourself—receives medical treatment. When you are involved in an auto accident, the body is flooded with adrenaline which can mask the symptoms of an injury, so even though you may think you are fine, hours, days, or even weeks later, you may develop injury symptoms. If you are medically able while at the scene, obtain witness contact information if there were witnesses, and take photographs of the scene with your cell phone.
If the accident was not your fault, once you are home, contact your insurance company and give them the basic details of the accident. Take the time to write down every detail you can remember about the accident, then contact a New Orleans rear-end accident attorney from New Orleans Legal to help you through this difficult time.
Who Is at Fault in a Multi-Car Rear-End Accident?
The driver of the car that rear-ends the car in front is almost always at fault—because they are almost always either driving too close to the car in front or are distracted—although there are certain exceptions. If you, as the car in front, do not have working brake lights or if you slow to turn then do not execute that turn you could be determined to be at fault for the accident. Your New Orleans rear-end accident attorney from New Orleans Legal can help you prove fault following your accident.
How Can the New Orleans Rear-End Accident Attorneys from New Orleans Legal Help?
If you have been injured in a New Orleans rear-end accident, attorney Peter Diiorio with New Orleans Legal can help you pursue the compensation you need to get your life back on track. You may be entitled to medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering, as well as other damages if a negligent driver rear-ended your car. We will deal with the insurance company, fighting for your rights and fair compensation while you focus on healing. At New Orleans Legal, we finance personal injury claims entirely, allowing you to let go of some of the anxiety, stress, and worry that accompanied your accident. Attorney Peter J. Diiorio will do everything in his power to ensure you receive maximum recovery as we advocate for you, stepping up to demand that the insurance company acts in good faith. Contact New Orleans Legal today!