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Are tailgaters automatically responsible for car accidents?

On Behalf of | Mar 9, 2022 | Car Accidents |

In Minnesota, following behind another driver too closely, known as tailgating, is a form of aggressive driving.

If you follow too closely and a rear-end collision occurs, you will likely be responsible for the damages.

The problem with tailgating

Tailgating hinders the driver from stopping in time to avoid an accident. It is a dangerous and unnecessary behavior that can result in severe injury or death if a collision occurs. The issue became so prominent along Highway 55 in Minnesota that officials developed and executed a project called Stop Tailgating.

The purpose of the Stop Tailgating project

The Minnesota Department of Transportation created the Stop Tailgating project to deter tailgating. They planted large dots along a stretch of Highway 55 and placed signs instructing drivers to maintain a space of two dots away from other drivers, which means that all drivers should see two dots between themselves and the vehicles in front of them.

How to avoid tailgating

According to the Minnesota Driver’s Manual, the best way to avoid tailgating is to follow the process of the three-second rule:

  • Note a marker next to the road ahead of the vehicle in front of you
  • Start counting to three once the vehicle passes the marker
  • Ensure that you are at least three seconds away from the marker

The two-dot distance from the Stop Tailgating project equals three seconds.

Aggressive driving is not illegal in most states, but an act of aggressive driving, such as tailgating, can lead to a collision. At-fault parties in car accident lawsuits often face hefty financial circumstances.