Long Island sees thousands of traffic accidents occur every year, many of them leading to injury or death. Not all of these accidents are preventable, but drivers can reduce their risk by being familiar with common accident scenarios. They can then take steps to drive defensively and learn to anticipate when a dangerous situation has come up.

The Most Common Types of Car Accidents in Long Island

The following are some of the most common types of Long Island traffic accidents we see:

1. Rear-End Collisions

A rear-end collision is one in which one vehicle strikes another from behind. A rear-end collision may involve two vehicles, or it could cause a chain reaction in which several vehicles are struck in turn. How can you avoid being a victim of this type of collision?

  • Do not follow the vehicle in front of you too closely. Make sure you can see the pavement under their tires at slow speeds. At faster speeds, leave one car’s length of space for every 10mph you are traveling.
  • If you notice someone “riding” your bumper, move over and let them pass if at all possible.
  • Always make sure that your brake lights and turn signals are working properly.

2. Head-On Collisions

A head-on collision occurs when two vehicles collide front end to the front end, or when a single vehicle crashes into a stationary object. Depending on the speed of one or both vehicles, these accidents can be catastrophic. You can reduce your chances of being involved in a head-on collision by:

  • Maintaining your lane of travel at all times.
  • Staying alert and watching the road ahead.
  • Paying attention to what is surrounding you in case you have to make an evasive maneuver.
  • Turning your wheels against the direction of oncoming traffic when you are hit.

3. T-Bone Collisions

Most people picture an accident in an intersection when thinking of a side impact or “T-bone” accident and with good reason — it’s the type of roadway where these collisions most often occur. A T-bone collision is when one car strikes the side panel of another, creating a T shape. A severe side impact such as this can cause traumatic brain injury, spinal injuries, and head trauma. Avoid being caught in a collision of this sort by:

  • Looking both ways as you approach an intersection to be sure it’s clear.
  • Slowing at a yellow light rather than speeding to make it through.
  • Watching out for people running the red light.
  • Only turning in front of oncoming traffic when it is completely safe.
  • Coming to a full stop at all stop signs and red lights before proceeding through the intersection.

4. Rollovers

A rollover accident may be tripped or untripped. A tripped rollover is one where the vehicle slides sideways, gets “tripped” upon a soft surface, and is propelled onto its side. An untripped rollover is one in which the vehicle made an abrupt maneuver, causing it to turn over. Not all rollovers can be avoided, but you can reduce your chances.

  • Avoid over-correcting when an evasive maneuver is necessary.
  • Do not speed through tight turns or curves in the road.
  • Avoid driving on loose gravel or dirt typically located on the sides of roadways.

5. Sideswipes

Sideswipe collisions are exactly what they sound like: two vehicles strike each other side-to-side. Most typically the driver’s side of one vehicle will bump into the passenger side of another. These accidents can be difficult to avoid due to blindspots located on every vehicle. To lessen your chances of being sideswipes or sideswiping someone else:

  • Look over your shoulder when merging or changing lanes rather than relying on your mirrors.
  • Move into the left lane when approaching an off-ramp if you have room.
  • Waiting to change lanes only when it is safe and you have confirmed the way is clear.

We have a few resources for you to learn more about sideswipe accidents:

  • What do I do if I am involved in a sideswipe car accident?
  • What are the most common types of sideswipe accidents?
  • What are the most common injuries associated with sideswipe collisions?

6. Single Vehicle Accidents

A single-vehicle accident most often occurs when a driver strikes a stationary object, loses control of the vehicle, or departs from the roadway. Many times, the driver was speeding, distracted, or failed to properly survey road conditions. They may have even been intoxicated, drowsy, or otherwise under the influence.

To reduce your risk of single-vehicle accidents:

  • Always slow down for curves and other hazards
  • Drive at a safe speed for the current conditions
  • Ensure your headlights are functioning and bright enough to see hazards
  • Be cautious when maneuvering in areas with lots of parking but no lighting
  • Avoid distractions and do not take your eyes off the road or both hands off the wheel
  • Never drive drowsy, drunk, or under the influence of medications or other substances

What Are Your Options As a Victim in a Long Island Car Accident?

If you are involved in a car accident in Long Island, you have the right to file a personal injury lawsuit to recoup your costs. You should not be forced to pay medical bills, take time off work, or repair your vehicle due to someone’s negligence or reckless behavior. Our experienced car accident attorney is here to help you. Reach out to our office by calling 631-780-5355, 1-833-TONALAW, or by contacting us online. We can schedule a free consultation via video conference with an experienced Long Island car accident attorney. No matter how you choose to contact us, we are ready to discuss your rights and explain your options.