No one wakes up one morning planning to get into a car accident, but they frequently happen, even if they’re minor. Rear end collisions are the most common type of vehicle accident, so let’s look at some fascinating statistics surrounding them.
Top Rear End Accident Statistics
- There are roughly 1.7 million rear end accidents annually
- 87% of rear end collisions happen because of a distracted driver
- Approximately 1,700 people die annually from injuries in a rear end collision
- 85% of neck injuries from car accidents come from rear end accidents
- Rear end accidents account for about 29% of all car accidents with a severe injury
- Of the 400,000 truck accidents annually, only 18% are rear end collisions
- Rear end crashes accounted for almost half of all accidents in Arizona in 2019
- 81% of rear end accidents happen when the lead vehicle is stopped
- Male drivers between 25-34 are 1.9% more likely to be involved in a rear end accident
- The rear driver in a rear end accident is almost always at fault
There Are Roughly 1.7 Million Rear End Accidents Annually
There are millions of car accidents every year worldwide. In the United States, approximately 1.7 million of those accidents are rear end collisions.
These accidents range from a little fender bender to more severe situations where fatalities occur, and they take the lead for the most common type of car accident in the country.
87% of Rear End Collisions Happen Because of a Distracted Driver
Did you know that almost 90% of all rear end accidents happen because of a distracted driver? Whether they’re minor or severe, distracted drivers are the cause 87% of the time.
Distracted driving could be because the driver is tired, under the influence, looking at their phone, or otherwise paying attention to anything else besides the vehicle in front of them and other drivers on the road.
Approximately 1,700 People Die Annually From Injuries in a Rear End Collision
Since not all rear end collisions are considered severe accidents, there aren’t a lot of deaths related to these accidents. That being said, of the over one million rear end accidents that happen annually, 1,700 people still die from the impact or injuries of being rear ended.
It might seem like a small number compared to the number of fatal car crashes annually, but rear end accidents are preventable in many cases so the number could be lower.
85% of Neck Injuries From Car Accidents Come From Rear End Accidents
Many people walk away from minor car accidents with few bruises or no injuries at all, but neck injuries are common car accident injuries.
The vast majority of neck injuries from car accidents come from rear end accidents. When another vehicle hits another from behind, no matter how fast they’re going, it can whip the neck forwards and back too quickly. These injuries result in more personal injury cases to cover medical costs due to the injury.
Rear End Accidents Account for About 29% of All Car Accidents With Serious Injuries.
Many people think of a rear end collision as something minor like a fender bender, but it can be severe in some situations. For instance, almost 30% of rear end accidents result in one or more people having a severe injury.
The severity of the injury could range from whiplash to back and neck injuries to even death. These happen at higher rates of speed, though.
Of the 400,000 Truck Accidents Annually, Only 18% Are Rear End Collisions.
Truck accidents tend to be far worse than your average vehicle crash sheerly because of the size of the truck. A rear end crash that might surprise you is that of the average 400,000 truck accidents in the US annually, only about 18% of those are rear end collisions.
Rear end accidents from truck drivers could be because they’re fatigued, distracted, or because the trucks cannot stop as quickly as other vehicles.
Rear End Crashes Accounted for Almost Half of All Accidents in Arizona in 2019
This statistic might not be too surprising, knowing that rear end accidents are the most common type, but in 2019, of all of Arizona’s car accidents, rear end collisions made up almost half of them.
During 2019, there were 111,090 car accidents involving multiple cars in the state, and 47,936 of those were caused by someone rear ending someone. It might not seem like a massive number at first glance, but when you compare it to the next most common crash, left turn crashes at only 18,903 is significant.
81% of Rear End Accidents Happen When the Lead Vehicle Is Stopped
A rear end accident can happen at any point while on the road, but the vast majority, 81% to be precise, occur when the front vehicle is stopped.
The front driver could be at a red light, stop sign, or otherwise not moving, and they’re more likely to be rear ended than when both cars are driving.
The reason for this could be the rear driver being distracted and not seeing that the front car didn’t move yet or had come to a complete stop.
Male Drivers Between 25–34 Are 1.9% More Likely To Be Involved in a Rear End Accident.
Younger drivers tend to be the ones involved in accidents the most because they tend to get distracted easier. One study found that men between 25-34 are slightly more likely to be involved in a rear end accident than men of other ages or women.
The reasons for this aren’t 100% known, but it’s a curious statistic that not many people know about rear end collisions.
The Rear Driver Is Almost Always at Fault in a Rear End Accident
If you’ve ever been in a rear end collision, you probably know that they almost always put fault on the rear driver rather than the front driver.
While there are no federal laws regarding who’s at fault in rear end accidents, most states place blame on the rear driver, even if it seems like the front driver or another person was at fault.
Depending on where you live and the circumstances of the accident, the rear driver might not be at fault, but nine times out of ten, they’re at fault.
A Car Driving 40 Mph and Hitting the Car in Front of Them Is the Same As the Front Car Hitting a Brick Wall at 20 Mph
Not many people understand how dangerous a rear end collision can be. Slower speeds tend to be less severe than collisions at faster speeds, but even going 40 mph can be intense.
A physics study showed that a rear driver going 40 mph and hitting a car in front of them has the same effect as if the front driver drove straight into a brick wall going only 20 mph. This can cause serious injury, so imagine how worse it could be at a faster speed!
As the most common type of car accident, knowing a little bit more about rear end collisions can be fascinating and beneficial. While there are more statistics on where these came from, these are some of the top ones.