The Caldarone Law Group, P.A.

How close is too close?

Nearly every driver in Naples is likely familiar with the unnerving feeling that arises when another car is following them far too closely. When you are driving, several things can happen that may force you to make an abrupt stop, at which point you then become exposed to collisions with the vehicles behind you. One who is following to close behind you may have almost no time to stop or swerve to avoid you. Yet the problem with proving that one was following you too closely is that your definition of what it too close might differ from that of others. There may also be situations in which the way in which you were driving might put you at fault. 

How are you to know for sure? Florida law clearly defines certain situations where a vehicle is following too closely, yet those only involve motor trucks, vehicles towing trailers, and caravans or processions. What about everyday scenarios? Section 316.0895 of the Florida state statutes says that another motorist should not follow your vehicle at a distance less than what would be considered reasonably safe and prudent. The law goes on to say that when determining such a distance, consideration should be given to the following factors: 

  • The speed that vehicles on the road are traveling at 
  • The current traffic conditions
  • The conditions of the roadway

The speed of the surrounding traffic is something that is particularly important to consider in rear-end collisions. If you are traveling at a speed that is well below that of other drivers on the road, you may be deemed to be at fault. Conversely, if the vehicle that struck you was exceeding the speed of the surrounding traffic, then little doubt may exist as to who should be liable. 

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