In Maryland, the traffic citation for following too closely is a 2 point offense (without accident) or 3 point offense (with accident).
The Statute in Maryland read as follows:
§ 21-310. Following too closely.
(a) General rule.- The driver of a motor vehicle may not follow another vehicle more closely than is reasonable and prudent, having due regard for the speed of the other vehicle and of the traffic on and the condition of the highway.
What is a reasonable and prudent distance?
The Maryland Courts have said that a rear driver has a duty to keep a safe distance, however, a safe distance depends on the facts of circumstances of each situation.
A good rule of thumb (or one in which I think the police officers use) is that you should be at least one car length behind the car in front of you. Of course, this is not always possible if traffic is “bumper to bumper.”
In either case, since a reasonable and prudent distance is unscientific and open to argument, consider fighting this ticket if you are charged. Often, a police officer will add this ticket to a speeding violation or unsafe lane change violation.
Need help with a Maryland traffic ticket? Call me at 301-563-9575 or 1-877-566-2408 for a free consultation. I’m an experienced Maryland traffic ticket lawyer and I’d be happy to help. I practice traffic law throughout the entire State of Maryland.