You didn't explain the situation very well in your original post. It sounds like multiple people are at fault here, and I'm no so sure you're completely free of fault either.
If other lanes are on dead stop and you're going 50-60mph (im assuming you were in the HOV lane), you're going to need much more than a 3 second cushion with the car in front of you to account for exactly this type of situation. Sorry to say, but it kind of is common sense defensive driving. The 3 second rule is a general guideline for ideal conditions, not an absolute rule.
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