Is Tailgating Illegal in Minnesota?

Is Tailgating Illegal in Minnesota?
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Most drivers in Minnesota have experienced tailgating at some point. Being tailgated can be frightening and frustrating. It can leave you feeling anxious and worried about your safety and the safety of your passengers.
While tailgating is dangerous, it is safe to say that most incidents do not result in car accidents. However, if you or a loved one has been involved in a rear-end car accident, it is important to speak with an experienced Minnesota car accident lawyer who can help.

The knowledgeable attorneys at Sieben Polk P.A. can answer your questions, analyze your case, and guide you through the legal process. From start to finish, Sieben Polk P.A. will ensure your case gets the attention and care it requires while you recover the damages you deserve.

Is Tailgating Illegal in Minnesota?

Tailgating is illegal in Minnesota. According to Minnesota statute 169.18 Subd. 8, tailgaters may be cited for following your vehicle too closely, regardless of whether their actions result in a rear-end collision.

Minnesota law states that the tailgater should not follow your vehicle more closely than is reasonable and prudent. Drivers must have due regard for the speed of vehicles and the traffic and road conditions.

The statute offers additional restrictions for drivers of specific vehicle types, including:

  • Vehicles drawing another vehicle
  • Motor trucks
  • Motor buses
  • Any vehicle following an authorized emergency vehicle responding to an emergency

These additional restrictions forbid these specific drivers from following another vehicle more closely than 500 feet.

If you have been the victim of a tailgating accident, you have limited time to file your legal claim. The statute of limitations for filing a tailgating claim in Minnesota varies depending on your specific circumstances. However, in general, the following time limits apply for filing suit:

Which States in the Upper Midwest Have Laws Against Tailgating?

Many U.S. states have tailgating laws to prevent people from following vehicles too closely and causing devastating motor vehicle accidents. These Upper Midwest states have the following laws targeting tailgating:

  • Iowa has a tailgating law outlined in Iowa Code 321.307.
  • Michigan has a tailgating law outlined in Section 257.643 of Michigan Compiled Law.
  • Minnesota has a tailgating law under Minnesota statute 169.18 Subd. 8
  • North Dakota has a tailgating law under Section 39-10-18.
  • South Dakota has a tailgating law under Codified Laws Section 32-26-40.
  • Wisconsin‘s tailgating law is found under Section 346.14.

How Close Is Too Close?

Knowing exactly how closely you can follow another vehicle can be tricky. It is usually better to err on the side of caution and allow more room than less.

You can follow the three-second rule, as the Minnesota Safety Council recommends. Allow three seconds of following time behind the vehicle in front of you during good weather and add another second for each adverse condition, such as rain, snow, fog, and night driving.

Why Do People Tailgate?

Drivers may tailgate you for various reasons, but they often want you to drive faster. This is why allowing the tailgater to pass you is often an effective strategy. However, some drivers may tailgate you for other reasons, including:

  • Road rage
  • Bad habits
  • Unintentionally, due to traffic
  • Inexperience or lack of knowledge about driving at a safe distance

A recent study found that drivers who prefer to speed tailgate more frequently than drivers who drive within the speed limit.

Who Is at Fault for a Tailgating Collision?

In many cases, the tailgater is often at fault if they hit you from behind. However, in certain scenarios, you may be at fault or share fault under Minnesota’s modified comparative fault law.

For example, if you were brake-checking the vehicle behind you, the court could find you responsible for a tailgating collision. The court may find your brake checking was negligent driving under Minnesota law.

If you are involved in a tailgating accident, an experienced lawyer can help you recover damages. Depending on the type of tailgating accident you or a loved one was involved in, contact one of the following:

Our Car Accident Attorneys Are Here To Help

Tailgating accidents can occur even when you follow the rules of the road and Minnesota’s state law. A rear-end tailgating accident can leave you emotionally shaken and physically injured. Luckily, you do not need to face this legal issue alone. Contact a law firm that understands tailgating accident claims.

If you or a loved one is a victim of a car accident, contact the experienced Eagan car crash lawyers. Call Sieben Polk P.A. at 651-437-3148 for a free consultation.

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