Under New Mexico statutory law, NM Stat. section 66-7-318 provides that “[t]he driver of a motor vehicle shall not follow another vehicle more closely than is reasonable and prudent, having due regard for the speed of such vehicles and the traffic upon and the condition of the highway.” In addition, New Mexico common law, or judge-made law, also provides that motorists must use reasonable care under the circumstances to avoid collisions with other vehicles on or around the roadway. This would similarly include a duty to avoid causing rear end collisions.
However, some truck drivers violate this statute regularly. It may be due to the fact that trucking is a “time is money” business, wherein the slower a delivery takes the slower a truck driver and trucking company get paid. This causes truck drivers to drive more aggressively than they should just to get deliveries done faster. In addition, some truck drivers violate this statute because of unfamiliarity with a large commercial truck. Many think they are still operating a regular vehicle which can stop much faster and quicker than a large box truck, 18 wheeler, semi tractor trailer, or other commercial vehicle. This is because the weight of a large truck requires increased distance to stop. Following too closely can result in dangerous Albuquerque rear-end collisions.
When a truck driver operating a large box truck rear ends another vehicle, it is likely that Section 66-7-318 is being violated. This means that a victim may use that violation of a statute to automatically establish negligence against the truck driver. This is known as the doctrine of “negligence per se,” and is important to victims in personal injury actions.
In addition, this section can be violated in many different situations or circumstances which cause Albuquerque trucking crashes. This includes the following:
Generally, a vehicle that is following too closely and rear ends another vehicle, that vehicle driving too close will be liable for the crash. While the liability is easier to establish under these circumstances, damages can be more difficult to establish because medical experts, economists, vocational experts, and other professionals which are required to demonstrate the proof.
Victims should call the NM Truck Accident Attorneys to learn how our Albuquerque trucking crash lawyers can help fight for your rights to compensation when a truck driver is following too closely. Call us by dialing (505) 883-5000 today. You can also contact us on our website through the easy to use and convenient Contact box located by clicking here.