Project Back Off: Lincoln Police launch new project to reduce rear end crashes
43 percent of car accidents in Lincoln are rear end collisions, the Lincoln Police Department released Tuesday. They say most of those are attributed to following too closely and not paying attention.
To help reduce those numbers, they're starting a new campaign called "Project Back Off."
Until December 25, Lincoln Police Officers will conduct traffic enforcement in high accident areas. They'll crack down on speeding and following too closely.
Police aren't the only ones saying these rear end crashes are getting out of hand- a local body shop owner said these accidents are happening more and more.
"We get a pretty large number of cars in with rear end accidents," Todd Spiedell said. "Everything from minor rear end damage to pretty severe."
Speidell said repairs for crashes like these start around $800 and typically only go up from there.
"Distracted driving from cell phones doesn't surprise me just looking around as you're driving and seeing people looking down at their phones as they're driving is a pretty good indicator those texts can wait, it's not worth it," Speidell said.
The Nebraska Office of Highway Safety teaches a three second following rule.
According to the department, at 30 mph you should be 132 feet behind the vehicle ahead of you, which is the same as 1/3 of a block of the length of seven minivans. At 40 mph you should be 176 feet behind the vehicle ahead of you, which is the same as a half a block or the length of 10 minivans. At 50 mph you should be 220 feet behind the vehicle ahead of you which is more than 3/4 block of the length of 13 minivans.
Police said the number of rear end crashes increases during rain or snow, and following distances can nearly double on wet pavement.
In addition to the special enforcement officers will distribute "back off" flyers during every traffic stop and accident. The flyers recommend putting your phone and food down while driving and focusing on the road.