The Consequences of Tailgating and How to Avoid It
Tailgating is a term used to describe following another vehicle too closely. It is a serious traffic violation and can lead to costly fines and points on your license. In most states, tailgating is considered a moving violation. If you are convicted of tailgating, you may be required to attend traffic school or have your driver’s license suspended. When drivers tailgate, they endanger themselves and the other motorists around them and break the law. The following are the consequences of tailgating and how to avoid them.
1. Causes of Accidents
Tailgating is one of the most common causes of accidents on the road. When a driver follows another vehicle too closely, they leave little to no room for reaction time if the lead car suddenly slows down or stops. This can result in a rear-end collision, which can cause severe injuries to both drivers and passengers. Most people get injured in a tailgating accident due to negligence on the part of the driver.
2. Costly Fines and Points on Your License
Tailgating is a moving violation in most states, which can come with costly fines and points on your driver’s license. The fine will vary from state to state, but it is typically around $100. In some states, you may also be required to attend traffic school if you are convicted of tailgating.
3. Increased Insurance Rates
Your insurance rates will likely increase if you are convicted of tailgating. This is because insurance companies consider tailgating a sign of recklessness a high-risk behavior. No insurance company will want to cover reckless drivers, so your rates will go up. The rate increase will depend on your insurance company, but it could be as much as 30%.
4. License Suspension
Your driver’s license may be suspended if you are convicted of tailgating. The length of the suspension will vary from state to state, but it is typically around 30 days. This means you will not be able to drive for a period, which can be a significant inconvenience.
5. Dangerous Situations
Tailgating can also lead to dangerous situations on the road. When drivers tailgate, they are more likely to become involved in a road rage incident. Road rage is when two or more drivers become angry with each other and engage in aggressive or violent behavior. This can result in a car accident or even a physical altercation. When drivers tailgate, they endanger themselves and the other motorists around them.
To avoid these consequences, ensure you give the car in front of you enough space. The general rule is to leave one car length for every 10 mph you are traveling. So, if you are driving 50 mph, you should be five car lengths behind the car in front of you. It will give you enough time to react if the other driver suddenly slows down or stops. If you are being tailgated, the best thing is to move out of the way and let the other driver pass. If you can’t do that, slow down and maintain a safe following distance. Don’t try to outrun the tailgater or make sudden lane changes.
In conclusion, tailgating is a serious traffic violation that can lead to accidents, costly fines, and points on your license. It can also increase your insurance rates and result in your driver’s license suspension. To avoid these consequences, ensure you are giving the car in front of you enough space and slow down if you are being tailgated.