Back in May 2017, Frontiers of Psychology released a study on the risks of a driving practice we all engage in from time to time. Probably, we never even think of this behavior as risky. It isn’t texting while driving or even eating in the car; instead, it is simply following a friend’s car in your own. On a regular basis, you and a friend find yourselves both heading to the same destination. If one person knows the fastest route or the location of your destination, that person is likely to lead, and the other person follows. It even seems like logical behavior, but statistics show that following a friend causes accidents and leads to poor decision-making out on the road.
Regulating Risky Behavior Behind the Wheel
A Miami car accident injury lawyer handles cases caused by all manner of reckless, distracted, and risky driving. The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles has put into place traffic rules to prevent much of this dangerous driving behavior. Actions such as tailgating, turning in front of another vehicle, and running a stop sign all result in a ticket.
The Florida legislature has even criminalized some of the underlying behavior that leads to this risky driving. These laws focus on such actions as drunk driving and texting while you drive. However, road safety depends on individual drivers. Even when controlled substances and cell phones aren’t involved, drivers can be prone to poor decision-making.
Actions the Government Can’t Regulate
Drivers speed when running late, make a hasty turn when frustrated by a tough left, and slam on the brakes to grab an available parking spot. Loss of patience, passenger distractions, and commotion on the sidewalk all lead to bad driving. None of these external factors is strictly illegal, but they still result in many of today’s motor vehicle and pedestrian accidents. As the study from Frontiers in Psychology proves, there is good reason to add following another vehicle to the list of external factors that perpetuate risky driving.
Why Following Our Friends Increases Risk
Most of the time, we are following a lead car that has the directions or knows the route to our destination in Miami. Accordingly, the following driver may fear getting lost on the way. To prevent losing sight of their friends’ cars, drivers are more likely to speed, run red lights, ignore pedestrians, and cut off other drivers. All of these actions increase the chances of an accident. More than likely the driver who is following will be cited for a collision or incident that results from hasty following. There is also psychological pressure to “keep up.” In the trailing cars, people are afraid of holding their friends back or being the reason both parties are late for an appointment or meeting. Even if the lead car isn’t in a rush, driving above the speed limit and other behavior can betray a sense of urgency in the trailing car.
Consulting With a Miami Car Accident Lawyer
At the time of an accident, the reason a driver made a hasty turn, swerved, or cut off another vehicle may seem unimportant. However, it can be valuable information when it comes time to prove fault in a Miami car accident lawsuit or to an insurance company. External factors, such as following a friend, could be the evidence your claim needs to show definitively that the other driver was at fault.
Have you been involved in a car accident in Miami accident with a driver who was following a friend or otherwise engaged in risky driving? Our personal injury firm in Miami ready to take your case. Our office in Miami, Florida, has represented individuals in motor vehicle, truck, motorcycle, and pedestrian accidents throughout South Florida.