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Wrong Way Driver
Wrong Way Drivers Warned
May 16, 2013
Hit and Run
When Involved in a Hit and Run
June 17, 2013

How bad is Tailgating?

Let’s start with, what is Tailgating? Simply put, it is the practice of driving on a road too close to the vehicle in front of yours. Many times the offending driver may be running late for work or appointment from not managing their time correctly. We see this far too often in the fast paced environment of the East Coast.

Most of the time, road rage is the cause of tailgating. Those behind you are provoked in one way or another, which then causes aggressive driving.


What are the CT laws for tailgating? What consequences are handed out to those who are ticketed? What would happen if you were to make a stop to turn into a business, home, or other establishment and the driver behind you is following too close?  It can be deadly.

Approximately one third of rear-end collisions involve tailgating.

According to research by the Highways’ Agency, tailgating is one of the top causes of car accidents. Following too closely, not leaving enough time or distance to react or stop.  Not a safe driving practice at all.

At worst, it is a violent form of road rage.  Driving aggressively — perhaps also with use of headlights and horn — to bully the leading vehicle’s driver to get out of the way. The driver being tailgated might not wish to comply, especially if doing so would involve breaking the law.  The front driver may increase speed, or, may do the opposite—tap or slam on the brakes to “get the tailgater off and away”.  If the front vehicle decelerates suddenly, there is a high risk of a collision and injuries.

“He was driving too slowly” or “she wouldn’t get out of my way” are NOT valid defenses here.

The tailgater is responsible—every time.

Connecticut law, under statute C. G. S. 14-240, requires that every driver maintain a reasonably safe distance between their vehicle and the one that is in front of them taking into account the speed of the others vehicle, weather, road and traffic conditions and other factors. CT also has many other laws that speak directly to prohibiting this type of tailgating aggressive driving, including our reckless driving statute C. G. S. Section 14-222; our speeding statutes Section 14-218a and 14-219; and even a statute for intimidating or harassing driving illegally behind another vehicle 14-240a. Some of these statutes provide in addition to criminal sanctions, civil damages against the offending party of double and treble damages for the harm they cause another due to their dangerous driving.

Tips for Determining a Safe Following Distance

  • When the back-end of a vehicle ahead passes a stationary object such as a sign along the road, count how long it takes to pass the same object – “one – Mississippi, two – Mississippi, three – Mississippi ….”
  • There should be a minimum 3 second count to for you to pass the same object as you driving behind the driver in front of you;
  • You should adjust the distance you maintain between you and the vehicle in front of you to a greater length based on if there is a higher density of traffic on the road; the worse the road conditions are due to inclement weather or if the road is wet or icy; and based upon such factors as sun affecting vision, or curves in the road, which require slowing down;
  • Try to stay out of the fast lane after you have utilized it to make a safe pass because the most dangerous and reckless drivers are often found in the left passing lane

Please feel free to contact Tindall Law Firm, LLC by calling us at 203-775-0018 or visit us online at http://tindall.webozy.net/ , if you have any questions about this or need help after sustaining injuries, losses or damages due to the reckless tailgating driving practices of another driver, or if you have any questions about any other legal issues. We are very experienced in handling these types of claims and have enjoyed a fair amount of success in helping people victimized by these menacing driving practices.