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Driver in front slammed on brakes

I was injured in an accident which was the fault of the driver in front of me suddenly slamming on his brakes when a traffic light went amber. I would like to make a claim for injuries and my lost earnings against his insurer as I am now out of hospital and it will be a few weeks until I able to work again. My wife thinks the accident was my fault because I went into the back of his car but I disagree as I think he did a dangerous manoeuvre. Should I pursue this or am I wasting my time?

Nigel Smith, by e-mail



You should always leave sufficient space between you and the vehicle in front to allow you to safely stop should the unexpected happen. The vast majority of rear end collisions are the fault of the person behind. However, in certain circumstances the driver who suddenly stops can be held at least partially to blame. For example, there have been cases involving people emergency braking due to a bird in their path where the courts have held that the driver was negligent for reacting as they did just because of a bird and with disregard to the safety of other road users.

In your case the driver stopped for an amber light which is required unless doing so is likely to cause an accident. You could pursue your claim but do expect to take a significant amount of blame yourself.



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