If you have been injured in a car wreck in which the at-fault driver was cited for O.C.G.A. § 40-6-49, or following too closely, then you may likely be able to recover compensation from that driver for your harms and losses.
O.C.G.A. § 40-6-49 is the Georgia law that makes it a criminal offense to follow another vehicle “more closely than is reasonable and prudent” based on the present “condition of the highway.”
This means that drivers should leave adequate space between their car and the car in front of them so that in case of emergency, the cars may stop without colliding into one another. As the statute suggests, the condition of the roadway at the time may change the amount of distance required. For example, in times of rain or ice, a reasonably prudent person may place two to three times the normal amount of space between vehicles.
If a person is negligent while driving, meaning that they commit an act that falls below the typical standard of care, and as a result, injuries someone, then they liable to the injured party for the injuries. This is the basis of personal injury law in Georgia.
Obviously, determining who caused the wreck is the first determination. Generally, when a driver is cited for following too closely (O.C.G.A. § 40-6-49), there is a rebuttable presumption that they are at-fault for the wreck. It is rebuttable because the person cited has a chance to fight the allegation in criminal court. If the driver is found not-guilty, then this helps that driver’s case. However, a guilty plea may be used against the driver in your civil case. This is why it is important to follow the case closely, and attend any hearings on the matter.
If you or a loved one have been injured in a car wreck and the at-fault was cited for following too closely, you will want to speak with an experienced car accident lawyer to investigate the insurance policies that may be available to you. So please, don’t hesitate, call and speak to one of our Atlanta car accident lawyers at Schenk Smith today. Our consultations are always free. If you would like to learn more about this topic or watch additional videos please subscribe to our YouTube channel.