Rear-end accidents are one of the most common types of accidents that occur in Florida and the
United States. These accidents often result in long-term, serious injuries. According to Florida
Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, following a vehicle “too closely” led to 3,634 crashes
involving non-incapacitating injuries, 350 crashes involving incapacitating injuries, and eight
fatal crashes in a recent year.
While rear-end accidents are often caused by the rear driver following too closely, speeding, or
getting distracted, these accidents are not always caused by the rear driver. Keep reading to learn
more about rear-end accidents and liability from the Jacksonville car accident lawyers at
Nooney, Roberts, Hewett & Nowicki.
In this article, we will discuss liability in rear-end vehicle accidents and how this type of accident
can lead to physical injuries using a scientific approach.
Florida Laws Regarding Rear-End Accidents
To minimize the chances of rear-end accidents occurring, Florida’s traffic laws require drivers to
maintain a safe distance between vehicles traveling in front of them on the road. If you cause a
rear-end accident because you were following too closely behind the car in front of you, there’s a
good chance you could be held liable for any injuries resulting from the crash.
However, there are times when the rear driver is not at fault for a rear-end accident. For example,
if you rear-end another driver because they suddenly stop without warning, then you may be able
to hold the other driver liable for your injuries.
One factor that can complicate liability in rear-end accident claims is Florida’s no-fault insurance
laws. Unless you can show that your injuries meet a certain “serious injury” threshold, you will
not be able to file a claim for compensation against the other driver. The same is true for any
other drivers involved in the crash. A Florida personal injury attorney can help document your
injuries and explain the legal options available to you.
Will You Have to Go to Court to Recover Compensation?
Most rear-end accident claims do not go to court. Instead, cases are usually resolved through an
insurance settlement. However, if you can’t get a fair settlement offer from an insurance
company, bringing your case to trial may be necessary. An experienced Jacksonville car accident
lawyer can review the circumstances and factors. Call our office at (904) 398-1992 or fill out a
fast and convenient form to schedule a free initial consultation
We Can Help You Without Any Upfront Cost!
Hiring a lawyer after a rear-end accident can sound like an expensive, intimidating process, but it
doesn’t have to be. Many personal injury lawyers, including our car accident attorneys at the
Nooney, Roberts, Hewett & Roberts, offer free initial consultations to prospective clients so they
can explain their rights and payment arrangements.
Here at Nooney, Roberts, Hewett & Nowicki, we offer a contingency fee arrangement in which
we provide legal services upfront at no cost to you. We receive a percentage of your settlement
once you receive compensation. However, if you do not receive any compensation, we do not
owe your attorney any fees.
Want to know more about how we can help you after a rear-end accident? Call our office at
(904) 398-1992 or fill out a fast and convenient form to schedule a free initial consultation!
Serious Injuries Caused by Rear-End Car Accidents
One of the most dangerous aspects of rear-end collisions is that the driver of the vehicle in front
does not usually anticipate an impending collision. Therefore, they do not have an opportunity to
take protective measures, such as bracing for impact.
This brings us to the science behind rear-end collisions. The faster a car rear-ends a victim, the
more traumatic the injury. However, researchers have found that injuries can result even at very
While many rear-end accidents are minor, some injuries from rear-ending are quite serious,
particularly if an accident takes place on the highway or the rear vehicle is traveling at a high
velocity. Some of the more common injuries that result from rear-end accidents include:
▪ Broken bones (e.g., hands, wrists, and ribs)
▪ Torn ligaments in the arms or legs
▪ Severe contusions
▪ Face lacerations
▪ Spinal cord injuries
▪ Traumatic brain injuries
Mechanism of Injury
Mechanism of injury refers to the method by which trauma occurs to the body. Mechanism of
injury helps inform triage guidelines and treatment decisions for people who have suffered rear
end collision injuries, impact trauma, multi-system trauma, and other injuries.
Mechanism of injury evaluations involve kinematics and biomechanics. Kinematics refers to the
potential or actual injuries the body incurs. Biomechanics refers to the actual force or impact
experienced by the body. Ultimately, the mechanism of injury helps to determine how and at
what level energy was transferred from the environment to the human body. The intensity of the
energy transfer will help determine how serious the injuries may be and what the subsequent
patterns of damage will be, based on the impact.
Factors Involved in Mechanism of Injury
Various factors can affect the mechanism of injury. One primary factor is the type of accident.
Each accident has its own inertia, force, mass, speed, and g-force (the acceleration imposed by
earth’s gravity.) These physics can greatly influence the mechanism and severity of the injury.
Additionally, the mechanism of injury is not the same for each person. The victim’s physical
condition can have a significant impact on the mechanism of injury. Some factors that may
impact the mechanism of injury include:
▪ Co-morbidities – Various health conditions can impact the mechanism of injury. A
person with heart disease may not be able to compensate for shock. Liver or kidney
disease can cause thinner blood that does not clot as well.
▪ Age – Younger, healthier adults may be better able to sustain an injury than an older adult
or child. Skin gets more delicate and bones become more brittle as people age.
▪ Pre-existing injury – If a person has a pre-existing injury and is impacted in the same
body part, the subsequent injury may be more severe because the body part is more
vulnerable than an intact one that has never sustained injury.
▪ Alcohol and drugs – Alcohol makes the blood thinner and less likely to clot. Various
illegal or prescribed drugs can have various physical effects on the body.
The term impact sequence refers to the consecutive impacts that occur during an injury. For
example, in a rear-end collision, the occupants in the front vehicle are usually launched forward
at the initial point of impact. The next impact occurs when the vehicle comes to an abrupt stop.
The body might collide with a fixed object in the car, such as the dashboard, steering wheel, or
windshield. The final impact occurs when the internal organs and tissues collide with body
We Can Help You After a Rear-End Collision
If you were injured in a rear-end car accident, Nooney, Roberts, Hewett & Nowicki is here to
help you fight for the compensation you deserve. Our Jacksonville car accident lawyers have decades of combined experience fighting for the rights of accident victims. Call our office at (904) 398-1992 or fill out a fast and convenient form to schedule a free initial consultation!