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Rubbernecking Accidents


Preventable motor vehicle accidents happen all the time, leading to severe injuries and even death. Among the many types of preventable motor vehicle accidents that happen in Florida are rubbernecking accidents. Rubbernecking is a type of distracted driving behavior. Fortunately, if you are injured in a rubbernecking accident, you can recover compensation for your injuries and damages from the rubbernecking driver.

What Is Rubbernecking?

As already mentioned, rubbernecking is a form of distracted driving behavior. But what exactly does this behavior entail? Rubbernecking is when a driver turns their head to stare at something while driving past it. Often, drivers turn their heads to stare at a collision. However, drivers also rubberneck at other things such as monuments or beautiful scenery.

Indeed, it is natural for drivers to be curious when they spot something unusual or interesting while driving. However, this curiosity can result in serious accidents. When a driver rubbernecks, they take their eyes off the road. If a rubbernecking driver looks at a distraction for too long, they may be responsible for causing an accident. According to experts, if you take your eyes off the road for more than two seconds, the odds of an accident double. Rubbernecking also causes cognitive distraction, which is a distraction that occurs when a driver’s mind is focused on something else other than driving.

Additionally, suddenly slowing down without warning to stare at something while driving can result in accidents.

Accidents and Injuries Caused by Rubbernecking Drivers

Rubbernecking can cause different types of accidents and injuries. A common accident that rubbernecking drivers cause is a rear-end collision. When a driver suddenly slows down to stare at something outside their vehicle, they do not give the rear driver enough time to react and come to a stop. On the other hand, a rubbernecking driver might fail to notice the vehicle in front of them slowing down, thus causing a rear-end collision.

Another accident that rubbernecking drivers cause is a lane departure accident. This type of accident happens when a motorist departs from their lane and into another lane.

Other accidents rubbernecking drivers cause include;

  • T-bone accidents
  • Head-on collisions
  • Multi-vehicle accidents

Injuries that can result from a rubbernecking accident include;

  • Broken bones
  • Back injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Neck injuries

Holding a Motorist Liable After a Rubbernecking Accident

If a rubbernecking accident results in you suffering severe injuries, you can recover compensation from the rubbernecking driver. However, just as it is with any other personal injury case, you will need to establish negligence before you can recover compensation. Establishing negligence generally involves proving that the other driver owed you a duty of care, which they breached.

Often, the court will find a driver that rubbernecked guilty of breaching their duty of care. This is because rubbernecking is a conscious decision to look at something outside the vehicle. It is different from a momentary distraction that a driver has no control over. For example, rubbernecking is different from a driver taking their eyes off the road because a bee came flying into their car.

Contact a Plantation Personal Injury Attorney

Were you injured in Florida due to a rubbernecking driver? An experienced Plantation personal injury attorney at Lyons & Snyder can help you recover the compensation you deserve.


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