Inattention & Following Too Close
In Springfield, the vast majority of traffic accidents, approximately 80%, are caused by one vehicle striking another in the rear. This type of accident is usually avoidable and could be prevented by changing drivers' habits. Common causes listed on accident reports for this type of crash are inattention and following too close.
Proper Following Distance
Drivers should remember to maintain the proper distance from the vehicle in front of them. A couple of easy ways to gauge the proper distance is to stay one car length back for every 10 miles per hour of speed, or to maintain a 2 second interval between you and the car in front of you. This can be measured by watching a spot on the road and counting ... one one thousand, two one thousand … from the time the car in front of you passes over the spot. At this time your front bumper should not yet be at the spot on the road.
The proper following distance should take into account not only being able to stop if the car in front of you slams on its brakes, but being able to stop if the car in front of you were to suddenly stop, for example, if it were to strike another vehicle in front of it and quit moving. If you were to strike the car you were following in the rear after it crashed into the rear of another vehicle, you would be just as guilty as the driver in front of you.