Peter Thompson
Peter Thompson

Rear-End Collisions

The knowledgeable Maine rear-end collision attorneys at Peter Thompson & Associates are dedicated to protecting the legal rights of victims injured in accidents caused by someone else’s negligence. We have extensive experience helping victims recover compensation for injuries incurred in rear-end collisions. Our firm provides tenacious legal representation to clients throughout Maine.

Rear-end collisions are the most common preventable accidents on the road today. Nearly 2.5 million rear-end collisions occur each year. These accidents may be caused by one negligent driver or a combination of forces that converge to make real vehicles collide like bumper cars. Beyond the extensive property damage and car repairs, rear-end collisions can also cause severe injuries. Even at low speeds, these accidents can cause soft-tissue injuries like whiplash, where the muscles in the neck hyperextend. Many times, the injury does not manifest itself until weeks after the accident, requiring follow-up visits and costly tests to diagnose. At higher speeds, rear-end collisions can involve multiple vehicles and more severe injuries.

Common medical conditions caused by rear-end collisions include:

  • Fractured sternum
  • Concussion or coma
  • Bleeding in the brain
  • Permanent facial scars
  • Injuries to legs and arms
  • Broken ribs, collar bone
  • Chronic lower back pain
  • Herniated or bulging discs
  • Temporary loss of function
  • Brain and spinal cord injuries

In two-car collisions, one driver is usually at fault. In multiple-car collisions, two or more parties may be liable. One car typically strikes the vehicle in front when it fails to stop in time. Basic traffic laws dictate that drivers must maintain a safe “buffer zone” with the car in front. In heavy traffic, negligent drivers may use this safety zone to switch lanes or cut in front of the driver. This forces the other driver to brake abruptly to avoid an accident. If the vehicle cutting in front is so close to make it impossible to avoid impact, that driver is at fault. Distracted drivers may also fail to notice that the vehicles in front have stopped. The rapidly disappearing distance between the cars does not give the approaching driver enough room to brake. If the car is traveling at a high velocity, the force may cause the car it hits to rear-end the vehicle in front.

Maine personal injury law is based on negligence. Negligence refers to the breach of a legal duty that one party owes to another. Drivers have a duty to safely operate their automobiles. This requires paying attention to the road and leaving a safe distance between your car and the vehicle in front. Negligent drivers breach that duty when they follow too closely, cut in front of other cars, or fail to brake in time to avoid a crash. In these cases, the at-fault driver becomes liable for any damage or injury that results. If more than one driver is at fault, the court may subtract that party’s share of negligence from the final award under a theory of contributory negligence. In cases where the rear-end collision was caused by faulty brakes or other defective car parts, the manufacturer may be liable. Manufacturers are strictly liable for harm caused by defective products. This means the driver with the flawed brakes and other victims may recover without proving negligence. Successful claimants are generally entitled to damages for medical expenses, lost income, and pain and suffering. In some cases, the court may also award punitive damages, attorney’s fees and costs.

If you were injured in a rear-end collision, the experienced Maine rear-end collision lawyers at Peter Thompson & Associates can help. For years, we have constantly been distinguished as one of the top personal injury law firms in Maine. We continue to provide the highest quality legal representation to injured individuals and families across the state. Our investigators and leading medical experts thoroughly analyze the effects of rear-end collisions and identify all liable parties. Our seasoned attorneys and highly-trained staff are likewise dedicated to helping you obtain the compensation you deserve. At Peter Thompson & Associates, we know that rear-end collisions can be traumatic, and we can help you get back on your feet. Call (800) 804-2004 today for a free consultation or contact us online.