Why a safe following distance is necessary at all times.
Presumed Arizona resident and Redditor /u/CharacterAD7824 shared shocking dashcam footage from Sept 26, 2023 in Mesa, AZ to the /r/IdiotsInCars subreddit showing the shocking moment when a car following another car too closely crashes into their rear causing a chain reaction accident damaging at least two other cars.
/u/CharacterAD7824’s video and thread is posted below.
As mentioned, this happened in Mesa, AZ on US 60 (aka Superstition Freeway) near Lindsay Road (Exact location on Google Maps linked here.)
We can see in the video what looks like a grey Honda Civic following too close to a Jeep crossover.
OP clarifies that traffic in the near distance began to slow suddenly.
“Traffic in front of him was slowing quickly. He obviously wasn’t paying attention to the road ahead. It even looks like he was accelerating.”
The Jeep brakes ever so slightly, causing the Civic to veer wildly to the left, straight into the path of another Civic.
The other Civic can’t avoid crashing and clips his front bumper.
That crash causes the original driver to spin left a full 90 degrees towards the wall and unfortunately into the path of an approaching truck in the fast lane.
The Civic driver causes a third collision which, at that point, OP pulls over.
OP supposedly checked out the driver of the Civic who started it all and was amazed at what he saw.
“I don’t even think he was wearing a seatbelt. Everything collapsed around him and somehow he was just sitting him his seat. His brother was in the passenger seat. I have pictures, it’s crazy.”
“This honestly makes me wonder if he was saved by a higher power, nothing else makes sense. There is no reason he should have survived much less been fully coherent.”
OP doesn’t give an update about the second car he hit that came to a stop but does mention the driver in the truck probably made it out OK.
“Guy in truck was good, but likely some good whiplash will set in.”
While leaving a three-second gap between you and the car in front of you is the generally accepted practice, two seconds seems to be the minimum.
Had the car that caused the chain reaction left a big enough gap, they may have had enough space to react and brake, and none of this would’ve happened.