One of the most common types of auto accidents that an auto accident injury lawyer will be called upon to deal with is rear-end car accidents. Put simply; this is when one vehicle collides with the back of the vehicle in front of them. Many factors can cause a rear-end collision, including intoxication, road defects, adverse weather, and of course, most commonly - driver negligence!

Who is Liable in a Rear-End Accident?

Any auto accident injury lawyer will tell you that every case is different, and it is necessary to be able to prove that one driver involved in the accident has acted negligently. However, in the majority of cases, it will be the tailing driver who is held accountable during a rear-end collision. This is primarily due to the universal rules of the road that say you should always leave a safe stopping distance between you and the vehicle in front of you. If the car in front comes to an abrupt halt, the tailing vehicle should be far enough back to be able to stop without a collision. It is difficult to dispute that the tailing driver is at fault in this situation. 

Don”Ēt Forget! - Safe stopping distances vary depending on the road conditions. Leave extra space for wet or icy road surfaces.

Injuries From Rear-End Collisions

In most rear-end collision situations, the role of an auto accident injury lawyer is less about proving who is at fault since it is usually the tailing driver and more about proving the severity of damage and personal injury that has occurred as a result of the accident. Even when the impact happens at a low speed, rear-end collisions can result in severe personal injury, especially in relation to the spine. Some of the most common injuries sustained as a result of rear-end collisions include:

  • Disk Herniation - The force of a rear-end collision can result in the compression of the spine, causing dislocation of the disks in the lower spine.
  • Whiplash - The impact can often jerk the body forward, exposing the neck to an abrupt motion that causes long term soft tissue damage to the neck.
  • Facial Wounds - If the car is rear-ended with enough force, the driver may hit their head on the steering column, which can result in a multitude of facial injuries such as a broken nose, fractures or lacerations some of which may leave permanent scarring.
  • Airbag Injuries - If the airbag is deployed, there is a chance of it causing burns to the scalp and facial area. 

What to Do Following a Rear-End Collision

If you are involved in a rear-end collision, it is important to take the appropriate steps. First and foremost, you should get medical attention for anyone who is injured. Once you have called for an ambulance and the police, the next step is to gather as much evidence as possible to help your auto accident injury lawyer with your case. This is where mobile phones have made life so much easier as it makes it convenient for you to take photos of the scene and any damage to the vehicles. Don”Ēt forget to take wide-angle shots to show the surrounding conditions. It is also a good idea to collect contact information from any witnesses who saw the collision as it happened.

Once you have dealt with all of the things that need your immediate attention, you would then contact your auto accident injury lawyer to discuss a potential personal injury lawsuit.


Butler, Vines and Babb is a leading law firm in Knoxville, TN, with extensive litigation experience in Medical Malpractice LawBirth Injury LawTrucking Accident LawPersonal Injury Law, and Business Law. Contact us today at or call 865-637-3531.

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