In the United States, there are close to two million rear-end collision accidents every year. Thousands of motorists are injured in these accidents, and some are even killed due to the extent of their injuries. There are several factors that impact the severity of a rear-end collision, and, consequently, the injuries of the motorists involved.
What Affects the Severity of a Rear-End Collision?
Speed is one of the most significant factors when analyzing how serious a rear-end collision is. The faster a car is traveling at the time of impact, the harder it will hit the car in front of it.
The size of the vehicles is also a major contributor to the severity of a crash. If a tractor-trailer hits a minivan, you can imagine that the injuries of those in the minivan will probably be severe—perhaps even fatal. However, if a two-door convertible rear-ends a sedan, the impact may not be as significant.
The location of the impact also affects the nature of a rear-end collision. For example, perhaps the driver realized he or she was about to rear-end a car and swerved at the last minute. The damage to the front car is primarily on one side of the rear bumper. However, if a car slams directly into a car in front of it, the force is much larger.
Injuries in a Rear-End Collision
The injuries caused by a rear-end collision may be relatively mild, or they may cause permanent disability.
Whiplash is one of the most frequently reported injuries after a rear-end collision. Whiplash occurs when the head is suddenly thrown forward and then quickly snapped backward. This harsh movement causes damage to the muscles in the neck, shoulders, and back. Soreness from whiplash may take a day or two to set in.
Depending on the force of the impact, the airbags may deploy during a rear-end collision. If this happens, the chemicals in the airbag may cause burns and other types of injuries. If the force is especially strong, the airbags could break one’s bones.
Traumatic brain injuries may also occur in a rear-end accident. Traumatic brain injuries are caused by sudden blows or jolts to the skull. In a rear-end accident, a motorist’s head may hit a seat or window, or it may be struck by another object in the vehicle.
Although seatbelts unquestionably save millions of lives every year, they do cause injuries from time to time. When a car is rear-ended, the force of the seat belt tightening against the passengers’ bodies may cause bruises, lacerations, or even internal damage.
Spinal cord injuries and other types of back injuries may also occur with a rear-end collision. Though many accident victims walk away with only some back soreness, others may be paralyzed if the spinal cord is severely damaged.
Damages in a Rear-End Collision Claim
Depending on the nature of a Texas motor vehicle accident, a range of damages may be available to accident victims. These damages may include:
- Medical expenses that stem from the accident, including an estimated cost of future medical care
- Lost wages, if the accident victim missed time from work
- Loss of earning capacity, if the accident victim is no longer able to take on the same responsibilities at work
- Loss of employment benefits, such as health insurance
- Expenses involved with remodeling a home, such as installing wheelchair ramps
- Pain and suffering, which compensates an accident victim for the physical discomfort he or she endured
- Emotional distress, such as depression, anxiety, or other psychological conditions caused by the accident
With the assistance of an experienced Texas personal injury attorney, each type of available damages will be pursued in your claim. Without an attorney, you may not even be aware of the damages you are legally entitled to.
At Patterson Law Group, We Pursue All Avenues of Recovery for Our Clients
The attorneys at Patterson Law Group are experienced in all types of accident claims, including those that involve rear-end collisions. To schedule a free consultation with our excellent legal team, contact us at 817-784-2000.