A secondary car crash occurs as a direct or indirect result of a previous (also known as primary) incident. Primary incidents are sudden and unplanned and can include anything from a cargo spill to a rear-end collision, to a stalled vehicle. Secondary crashes tend to take place shortly after, and in close proximity to, the primary incident(s).
While secondary crashes can occur anywhere, they are more likely to happen during high traffic congestion, in urban areas, and on highways with at least four lanes. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) estimates that 20 percent of all traffic incidents involve secondary crashes, but there are several steps all drivers can take to avoid them.
A secondary car crash can be caused by a previous motor vehicle collision or traffic incident that is unexpected and disrupts the normal traffic flow. Based on data from FHWA, the chances of a secondary crash increases by 2.8 percent for each minute the primary incident continues to be a hazard.
Some of the primary incidents that most commonly result in secondary crashes include:
Drivers can help reduce the likelihood of being involved in a secondary crash in the following ways:
In attempting to avoid a secondary car crash, drivers often end up colliding with other vehicles, setting off a chain reaction that can quickly lead to a multiple-vehicle accident. When a secondary crash is part of a multiple-vehicle pile-up on a high-speed freeway, the consequences are usually catastrophic.
Chain reaction accidents are some of the most severe types of crashes because it is often difficult for first responders to access those injured and vehicles have usually suffered multiple impacts. There is hope that the introduction of certain crash avoidance technology, such as automatic braking and collision detection systems, will help prevent multiple-car pile-ups in the future.
If you have been injured in a secondary car crash that was caused by the negligence or recklessness of another driver, contact our car accident lawyers at Belt, Bruner, & Barnett P.C. to find out how we can help. Our Alabama personal injury lawyers have the knowledge, experience, and resources necessary to fight for the maximum compensation available for your claim while you focus on recovery. Call us today at (205) 933-1500 for a free consultation. With offices in Birmingham, Mobile, Huntsville, and Montgomery, our car accident lawyers will travel to the location most convenient to you.