Driving is a skill that most people take for granted.
In the United States, for example, most teenagers learn how to drive between the ages of 14 and 18.
And with so many cars on the highway, and with so many people relying on vehicles to get them from place to place, the vast majority of adults are probably going to own and operate a vehicle at some point in their lives.
With that being said, it’s also true that driving is a pretty precise skill set.
And a lot of people don’t realize that it actually pays to really stay on top of it where safety is concerned.
One of the biggest mistakes that most drivers make is tailgating.
What Is Tailgating?
When you’re driving too close to the car in front of you—to the extent that there isn’t enough space between your car and the leading car ahead of you within which to operate safely in the event of an emergency, you are technically tailgating that car—and this can be an extremely dangerous maneuver that many drivers carelessly engaging on a daily basis.
In this post, you’re going to learn 5 reasons for why you should never tailgate a car.
Here’s what you need to know.
1. They Could Stop At Any Moment
The most obvious danger associated with tailgating is that the driver in the car ahead of you could choose to slam on their brakes at any given moment.
And if they did, you wouldn’t have very much time to stop before you slammed right into their rear bumper.
This is obviously problematic.
It simply increases the risk of an accident/injury.
2. If You Get Rear-Ended, You May Hit The Car In Front Of You
This is another heightened danger that comes from tailgating.
If you were to get rear-ended by the car behind you, there would be little room for you to avoid slamming directly into the car in front of you—thus making the accident even more dangerous, inflicting more damage on everyone’s vehicles, and also potentially putting yourself either at fault or partly at fault for the incident when it was actually caused by the person behind you.
This is both a physical danger and a legal danger.
It just pays not to do it.
3. It Diminishes Your Reaction Time
When you’re tailgating a car and following it too closely, you’re going to seriously diminish your ability to respond to danger in a timely fashion.
As a general rule, you’re supposed to maintain ‘3 seconds of space’ between your car and the car in front of you.
This gives you 3 seconds of reaction time, which is usually enough to avoid danger in the vast majority of circumstances.
But if you follow too closely, you won’t even have a second—and then, you literally won’t have time to respond to danger.
4. It Can Distract The Other Driver
Tailgating another car isn’t just dangerous.
It’s also highly distracting.
It tends to make the person being tailgated extremely nervous, and for good reason.
If something goes wrong, you’ll smash right into their rear bumper, causing damage to their car and possibly even physical injury.
However, the fact that they’re distracted by tailgating might also increase the odds that they’ll make a mistake—and actually cause an accident in itself.
Plus, you’ll most likely be the one at fault if this happens.
So once again, it just pays to stay safe.
5. It Can Provoke Needless Road Rage
Rather than just being distracted by tailgating, some drivers get legitimately angry about it.
It could cause them to swerve their car in an aggressive manner, shout at you from the window, wave their arms at you, or maybe to even slam on their brakes in a fit of rage to provoke an accident that’s highly likely legally going to be considered your fault.
Hey, it’s a wild world out there.
You never know what angry people will do.
It’s just better to stay safe and avoid tailgating altogether.
Note: If you ever get into any sort of accident involving another driver who was experiencing a bout of road rage, it’s really important to call your lawyer immediately.
This will help you to take the proper steps to rectify the situation without putting yourself at legal or financial risk.
Now you know why you shouldn’t ever tailgate a car.
Hopefully, these tips will help you to stay safe and to arrive at your destination free of harm and difficulty.
You’ve got this.
Stay safe out there.