Frequently Asked Questions - Common Rear-End Car Accident Injuries
According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles: “Florida had upwards of 14.6 million licensed drivers and an estimated 395,785 car accidents in 2017.” Rear-end accidents usually happen when a distracted driver runs their car into the back of another. This are also called “fender benders”. Even though these kinds of impacts can occur at relatively low speeds, they can still result in severe injuries. When a person is involved in a rear-end collision, the most common injuries that they could suffer include are: whiplash, concussion, Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), headaches, broken bones, burns, cuts and bruising, disfigurement, partial or full paralysis and spinal cord injury.
When a driver and passengers have no warning of an on-coming accident, they are more likely to be severely injured than someone who sees a crash coming. This is because the spine does not have time to stabilize and brace itself against impending impact. Most people who are injured in rear-end crashes will be dealing with a herniated disc, with a sprain or strain or with a case of whiplash. Whiplash is the most commonly cited injury from rear-end collision. Whiplash is caused by violent, sudden movement of the neck and head. Whiplash injuries can differ from person to person, depending on the accident and the health of the person involved in it. Whiplash is a sprain or strain injury that happens when the spine or neck is jerked vigorously by an impact.
A herniated or bulging disc may occur when a rear-end collision's impact causes a spinal disc to protrude or herniate into the canal between the spinal vertebrae. When a herniated disc presses against a spinal nerve, excruciating pain can radiate to the arms or legs. Sprains and strains are ligament damage caused by an over extension of a joint. Soft tissue injuries like these cause discomfort and pain through swelling, strains, soreness, stiffness, and bruising. Skin bruises are also called contusions, they are often cause by blunt force. They may not appear serious, but they require medical attention to ensure they are not symptoms of a more serious issue. Strains occur in your muscles, tendons and ligaments.
Sometimes, the injuries that victims sustain in a rear-end collision may not be immediately apparent, so anyone who is involved in a traffic accident must obtain medical attention right away, even after a low-speed collision. While a brain injury or permanent paralysis is sometimes the result of a rear-end accident, most people who are injured in rear-end crashes will be dealing with a herniated disc with a sprain or strain, or with a case of whiplash. Sprains and strain are ligament damages caused by an over extension of a joint. Lacerations are also very common rear end accident injuries.
Most importantly, it is crucial to remember that soft tissue injuries normally do not appear immediately following the accident. The release of adrenaline and other natural hormones temporarily masks the injury and pain symptoms for a day to even weeks. Therefore, it is crucial that anyone involved in a crash still sees a doctor following the accident regardless if you think it is necessary or not. The faster you seek medical attention after you rear-end collision, the better chance you have of a full recovery. Additionally, it is necessary to see a doctor and have your injuries documented if you wish to file a claim. In fact, in Florida, it is extremely important that if you are filing a Personal Injury Protection claim, you start treatment within fourteen (14) days from your auto accident. If you do not, your automobile insurance company can deny your coverage and refuse to pay. PIP (Personal Injury Protection) is the type of insurance that will pay cover medical bills up to 80% and 60% of wage loss. These medical expenses must also be “reasonable” and “medically necessary” or a PIP carrier may deny payment for certain services it deems to be unreasonable or not medically necessary. Untreated injuries in rear-end collisions may lead to the formation of scar tissue or to the permanent loss of a full range of physical motion, but proper and immediate medical treatment can often keep an injury from resulting in permanent damage.
According to the safety researchers, headrests are the best protection in rear-end collisions for your neck, head, and spinal cord. If a headrest is set too low, your back or neck could be dangerously overextended, stretched and strained in a collision. It is also common to see injuries to the extremities. In some cases, the air bags in a vehicle may not deploy or may not even be equipped. In general, the more serious your injuries, the longer you will experience pain and soreness. Six weeks is the average recovery time after an auto accident. Some victims will feel back to normal sooner than this, while others will experience pain and suffering for a lifetime.
Studies have also shown that a rear-end collision at speeds as low as five miles per hour can induce cervical (neck) injury, and whiplash can occur at speeds as low as 2.5 miles per hour. When your injury in a low-speed, rear-end accident appears at first to be a trivial injury, an auto insurance company might deny your injury claim by contending that a low-speed crash simply could not be the cause of a serious injury. Too often, that is exactly what happens. And that is one reason why you'll need a good injury lawyer working on your behalf.
During high speed rear end collision injuries at the moment of impact the head first snaps back, causing extreme trauma and soft tissue damage to the neck and shoulders as the force of the accident rebounds through the body at ultra high speed and force. The neck can snap again when the vehicle is stationary. Further a high-speed collision can cause severe bodily damage. The National Transportation Safety Board says more that 1.5 million rear-end traffic collisions every year in the United States result in about 1,700 fatalities and half-a million or more serious injuries.
If you feel that you have been improperly diagnosed or have not received the proper medical attention for your injuries call Trial Pro and speak to an experienced Central Florida personal injury and car accident lawyer at Trial Pro. Call us at Trial Pro, P.A at-1-800-Trial Pro.