Common Injuries In Car Accidents
The kinds of physical injuries that victims of a car accident sustain can vary widely based on the details of the specific wreck, but there are a few types that are much more likely to occur than others. The types and severity of injuries that may happen in a car crash are influenced by a variety of factors, such as:
- The speeds of the vehicles involved in the accident;
- The area of the car where an impact occurred;
- The passenger’s body position within the vehicle. (For instance facing forward in the seat is safer than leaning or reaching over into the back of the vehicle);
- The presence and type of airbags and other safety features in the car; and
- The use of a seatbelt.
Injuries in a car accident generally fall into two categories: 1) impact injuries caused by a person’s body moving around the inside of the car; and 2) penetrating injuries caused by broken glass, pieces of the interior of the vehicle or moving objects within the car.
Soft Tissue Injuries
The most common type of injury in a car accident are soft tissue injuries, which involve injury to tendons, muscles, and ligaments, usually through some form of overextension. “Whiplash” injuries, injuries to the soft tissue of the neck and upper back, are soft tissue injuries, and along with injuries to the mid and lower regions of the back are the most common injuries people usually sustain in a car accident. Soft tissue injuries are often difficult from both a legal and medical standpoint, because they do not typically image well, if at all on x-ray radiographs. This can make them harder to prove in court than a more visually obvious injury such as a laceration or broken bone.
Another type of injury that commonly occurs in an auto accident, and one that is potentially among the most severe, is head injuries. These can range in severity from mild concussions to brain aneurysms. These types of head injuries as a whole are referred to as traumatic brain injuries. Traumatic brain injuries can have long-term and even permanent effects that can be life-altering for the victims and their families.
Additionally, a variety of different types of skull fractures, as well as injuries to the eyes and facial bones are often associated with head trauma. Individuals who wear eyeglasses often suffer from additional impact damage to the eyes and surrounding face caused by airbags inflating when a person is wearing an improperly adjusted seatbelt, which, luckily, is an easily preventable injury.
A third very common injury suffered by people involved in a car accident are broken bones, typically caused by either the limbs hitting pieces of the car interior, or injuries caused by the vehicle deforming under the force of the impact and pinning various body parts inside the vehicle.
It is quite common for a person with broken bones from a car accident to have injured their collar bone. This may seem to be an odd area to be injured until one considers that a properly adjusted seatbelt should be worn across some of the strongest bones in the body: the hips and the collarbone. Seatbelts are designed to stretch to disperse energy during an accident to help re-channel momentum. The remaining energy is directed into the passenger’s hips and collarbone, which will often cause injuries.
This mechanism of action is also why seatbelts that were being used during an accident should be replaced; like an airbag, child’s car seat, or motorcycle helmet, seatbelts are “one-use” items, and will not necessarily provide adequate protection afterwards.
Florida Car Accident Attorneys
If you or a loved one has been hurt or killed in an automobile accident in Florida, Alan Goldfarb, P.A. can help. As with any legal matter, time is of the essence, and we encourage you to speak with a representative telephone at 305-371-3111 or online today. The faster you retain representation the sooner we can have you back on the road to recovery.