What are the most common causes of multiple vehicle accidents?
Los Angeles Angels center fielder Mike Trout was recently involved in a multi-car accident while driving home from Angels Stadium after a game. Trout was traveling on South 55 near Tustin, California at about nine p.m. when traffic in front of him slowed. Trout swerved to avoid the cars ahead but collided with the rear left side of a Chevrolet Sonic. The force of the crash sent the Sonic into the truck in front of it. Trout miraculously emerged from the accident uninjured, but a 27-year-old woman sustained major injuries and had to be cut from her vehicle.
Causes of Multiple Vehicle Accidents in California
Multi-vehicle accidents are responsible for over half of all fatal car accidents, killing over 10,000 people a year, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. There are numerous potential causes of multi-car accidents, but some of the most common include:
- Speeding: A car or truck that is traveling about posted speed limits or too fast for the road and weather conditions may be unable to slow down or stop in the event of traffic ahead. When a speeding car collides with the car in front, it can trigger a multi-car pileup.
- Following too closely: All drivers must maintain a safe following distance to allow themselves plenty of time to stop if the car ahead must slow or halt. Cars that follow too closely can cause a chain reaction crash, careening into the vehicle ahead, and likely pushing that car forward into the lead vehicle.
- Distracted driving: Drivers who talk on their cell phones, text, eat, or engage in other distracting behaviors can set off multiple vehicle accidents when they swerve into the other lane or fail to stop.
- Driver fatigue: Several studies have shown that tired driving can be just as dangerous as drunk driving. Fatigue is especially common among commercial truckers and night shift workers. If a tired driver nods off behind the wheel or becomes dangerously unfocused, he or she might hit the car in front, drift into another lane, or drive off the road.
No matter the cause, multiple vehicle accidents present complex issues of liability. Anyone injured in such an accident should consult with an experienced Los Angeles car accident attorney as soon as possible.