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Posted on June 20, 2023 in Rules Of The Road

car accident pile up on the streetGreenville is growing, and with our expanded population comes an increase in car accidents. One of the most serious categories of crashes involves several vehicles in a chain reaction of collisions. Here is what you should know about pile-up accidents and what you can do to avoid them.

How Do Pile-Ups Happen?

Pile-up car accidents, also known as multi-vehicle accidents or chain-reaction accidents, occur when multiple vehicles collide in a series of impacts. These accidents often begin with an initial collision between two cars.

The most common causes include:

  • Sudden braking
  • Speeding
  • Tailgating
  • Distracted driving
  • Disabled or accident vehicles that block traffic
  • Reduced visibility due to fog, rain, snow, and other adverse weather conditions

These accidents typically happen on highways or roads with high traffic volumes and peak travel times, like rush hour.

How to Avoid a Chain-Reaction Crash

Chain-reaction crashes can result in significant damage, injuries, and sometimes fatalities. Here are ways to help you avoid a pile-up:

Increase Your Following Distance

Use the three-second rule to maintain a safe following distance between your car and the vehicle in front of you while driving. To apply the three-second rule:

  • Choose a fixed point ahead, such as a road sign, a building, or a tree.
  • When the vehicle ahead of you passes that point, start counting “one thousand and one, one thousand and two, one thousand and three.”
  • If you pass the fixed point before you finish counting to three, you are too close and should increase your following distance.

Stay Alert

Avoid distractions such as using your phone, eating, or adjusting the radio while driving. Stay focused on the road, traffic conditions, and other drivers’ behavior.

Avoid Speeding

Driving too fast reduces the time and braking distance needed if traffic ahead slows or stops suddenly. Adjust your speed according to the weather conditions and traffic. This will give you enough time to react and stop if the vehicle ahead suddenly slows or stops.

Drive Defensively

Expect the unexpected. Be aware of the traffic flow and anticipate potential hazards, such as congested areas, intersections, sudden stops, or cars entering from a private drive. Keep an eye on your mirrors and be prepared to react quickly. Use turn signals.

Move Vehicles from the Road After a Fender-Bender

If you are involved in a minor crash, and your vehicle is blocking traffic flow, you should drive your car to the shoulder or entirely off the main road if you can do so safely. This helps prevent another accident when vehicles try to move around your car. If your car is too damaged to drive, turn on the car’s emergency flashers.

How Our Lawyers Help Victims of Chain-Reaction Crashes

A pile-up car accident lawyer can help you understand your legal options. You could have the right to seek compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, pain, suffering, and other losses from the at-fault party. For over a decade, The Melonakos Law Firm has protected the rights of injured people and helped them recover the compensation they deserve.

Talk to Our Experienced Greenville Car Accident Attorneys Today

You could be entitled to compensation if you were hurt in a pile-up accident that was someone else’s fault. Let The Melonakos Law Firm help while you focus on getting better. Contact our Greenville car accident attorneys today for a free consultation.