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What Are Secondary Car Crashes?


According to the Federal Highway Administration, one in every five auto accidents is a secondary accident.

Car Accident Attorney NY

Car accidents roughly break down into two types: primary and secondary accidents. You can think of a primary accident as a first-hand accident or a standard/typical car accident. On the other hand, a secondary car accident is an accident that occurs because of another car accident. Secondary car crashes are more common than you’d think. In fact, according to the Federal Highway Administration, one in every five auto accidents is a secondary accident.

Filing a personal injury claim for secondary crashes can get a little complicated, but we are here to help. Below, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about secondary crashes and how you can receive compensation from your insurer if ever involved in one.

What Are Common Causes of Secondary Car Crashes?

Countless factors can lead to secondary crashes. Here are some of the most common causes of these accidents.

  • Tailgating and rear-end collisions
  • Drivers making sharp turns or swerving to avoid collisions
  • Abrupt vehicle malfunctions
  • Rollovers, especially with heavy trucks

These are just a few of the many causes of secondary car crashes. These types of crashes are hazardous, especially if they happen on busy roads like highways.

How Do Secondary Car Crashes Occur?

Whenever there’s a primary accident, it’s likely to be followed up with one or more secondary crashes. Secondary car accidents are common in busy city streets or highways with more than two lanes. After a primary car crash, surrounding drivers need to respond quickly to avoid secondary crashes. Here are things you can do to avoid getting in a secondary accident.

  • Avoid tailgating
  • Drive slowly and carefully in rainy or foggy weather
  • Drive cautiously while approaching an accident site
  • Avoid overspeeding because it may hinder your reaction time in case of the unexpected
  • It will also help if you consider taking defensive driving lessons, where you’ll learn how to respond appropriately to unanticipated events.

Getting Compensation After a Secondary Accident

Most secondary accidents are a result of a single driver’s negligence. But since New York is a no-fault state, your insurance company will cover your damages and injuries regardless of who’s at fault. However, you can still sue the at-fault driver if you meet the serious injury threshold.

If you decide to sue the at-fault driver, you’ll need strong evidence to prove liability. However, It’s hard to trace liability in secondary car crashes because there are many vehicles involved. That’s why it’s essential to hire a competent attorney to help you gather evidence and negotiate with the insurance company.

Hire an Attorney

Regardless of whether you had a primary or secondary car crash, don’t pursue your claim without an attorney by your side. The injury claim process can be complicated and overwhelming. Hiring an attorney will save you the frustration and help you get a fair settlement from the insurance company.

Are you in New York and looking for a personal injury attorney? Apicella & Schlesinger are here for you and ready to help you pursue your claim. Contact Apicella & Schlesinger today.

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