Common Car Accident Injuries in Georgia
Every car accident is unique, with different circumstances affecting the severity of injuries and damages involved. However, there are some types of injuries that are common among car accident victims. At Weaver Law Firm, we have handled car accident claims involving a wide range of serious and catastrophic injuries. We know the struggles that accident victims face, and we are here to help.
What Injuries Could Be Sustained in a Car Crash?
On average, close to 20,000 people are seriously injured in Georgia traffic accidents each year. Many of these accidents occur at high speeds, and the most devastating injuries affect those who crash without proper safety restraints.
The violent forces of a car crash can cause severe injury to nearly any part of the body. But the most common types of car accident injuries include:
- Traumatic brain injuries: Approximately 166 Americans die from traumatic brain injuries (TBI) every day, and motor vehicle crashes are one of the leading causes of TBI, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Even minor crashes may result in concussions. More severe accidents can lead to intracranial hemorrhaging, penetrative injuries, and even permanent brain damage.
- Broken bones: Our bones can only withstand so much pressure before they break. When the human body is jolted, struck, contorted, or crushed in a car accident, the tremendous forces it absorbs can easily cause one or more bones to fracture or shatter entirely. In some cases, broken bones can cause additional trauma, such as internal bleeding.
- Soft-tissue injuries: Soft tissues such as the skin, muscles, tendons, and nerves connect and support our organs and other internal structures. Soft-tissue injuries are some of the most common injuries in both minor and severe crashes. Symptoms of soft-tissue injuries typically include pain, swelling, bruising, and reduced range of motion.
- Spinal cord injuries: The trauma of a car accident can damage the vertebrae or the soft tissues surrounding the spinal cord. When the spinal cord is damaged or surrounding structures exert pressure on the spinal cord, signals from the brain may be interrupted before they can reach the rest of the body. This can lead to conditions such as paraplegia, or paralysis in the lower limbs, and quadriplegia, paralysis affecting all four limbs.
- Back injuries: Back injuries are extremely common in all types of car accidents. When the spine is subjected to blunt force trauma, penetrative trauma, or crushing forces, injuries such as dislocated vertebrae, compression fractures, and herniated discs can occur.
- Neck injuries: Whiplash is the most common type of neck injury sustained in car accidents, especially rear-end collisions. When sudden blows force the neck and body to jolt back and forth, like the cracking of a whip, the muscles, tendons, and ligaments in the neck can sustain severe trauma. Pain and other symptoms of whiplash are often delayed but may persist for weeks or even months.
- Joint damage: Joints, such as knees, elbows, hips, shoulders, and knuckles, are frequently injured upon impact in car accidents. Knee trauma is especially common because the knees are vulnerable to being struck or crushed against instrument panels in a crash. Other common joint injuries from car accidents include sprains, dislocations, and soft-tissue tears.
- Internal injuries and bleeding: Internal injuries are incredibly serious and often require surgery to treat. Internal bleeding, puncture wounds, and ruptured organs can result from blunt impacts, flying or falling debris, or crushing wounds. Not only are these injuries potentially deadly, but they are also particularly hard to diagnose, so it’s important to always seek prompt medical care after a crash.
- Deep cuts, bruising, and scarring: Broken glass, flying debris, and even lifesaving airbags or seat belts can cause cuts, bruises, and scarring in an accident. In some cases, these injuries heal on their own over time. However, cuts that become infected can lead to painful complications and permanent scars. Extensive scarring can impact a person’s range of motion, self-esteem, and overall quality of life.
Types of Auto Accident Cases
Any type of auto accident can lead to serious and painful injuries. Even motor vehicle accidents that occur at low speeds can cause severe trauma that may require surgery or extensive medical treatment. At Weaver Law Firm, we frequently work with clients who have been injured in car accidents such as:
- Rear-end crashes: A rear-end crash involves the front of one vehicle colliding with the rear of the vehicle ahead of it. These accidents commonly occur because of drivers who are following too closely or simply not paying attention. Rear-end crashes often lead to back and neck injuries, such as whiplash, herniated discs, and soft-tissue sprains or strains.
- T-bone accidents: A T-bone accident occurs when the front end of one vehicle crashes into the broadside of another vehicle, forming a “T” shape. T-bone collisions happen most often when drivers run red lights or stop signs at intersections. T-bone accident injuries can be especially catastrophic because of the relative lack of protection from airbags and vehicle crumple zones.
- Head-on collisions: Head-on collisions are some of the most devastating and dangerous accidents that occur, involving two vehicles that strike each other head-first. These accidents often happen when drivers travel against the flow of traffic or make unsafe passing maneuvers. Head-on collisions typically result in catastrophic injuries, such as traumatic brain injuries, amputations, and paralysis.
- Rollover accidents: A rollover accident is a particularly violent type of wreck in which a car or truck flips over onto one side or rolls over multiple times. In some cases, vehicle occupants may be slammed against the interior or ejected from the car entirely. Drivers and passengers who are not wearing seatbelts are even more likely to sustain serious or fatal injuries in a rollover accident.
- Sideswipe crashes: A sideswipe crash occurs when the side of one vehicle collides with the side of another vehicle traveling in the same or opposite direction. Sideswipe crashes can happen when distracted or impaired drivers drift out of their lanes or fail to check blind spots. These accidents can leave vehicle occupants with broken bones, internal trauma, and other painful injuries.
What Determines Fault for an Auto Accident?
In Georgia, you’re entitled to claim compensation when you are involved in an accident that was not your fault. In fact, you can still recover money even if you were partially at fault, as long as your share of the fault is less than 50 percent. However, being partially responsible for an accident means your compensation will be reduced in proportion to your percentage of fault.
To claim compensation from another driver’s insurance policy, you must be able to demonstrate that the driver was at fault for the crash. When you file a car accident claim, an insurance adjuster is typically assigned to investigate. Insurance adjusters usually review evidence such as police reports, witness statements, and photos of the accident to determine who is at fault. Remember, though, that their goal is to minimize liability and payouts. It is in your best interests to have a skilled car accident lawyer on your side to conduct an investigation on your behalf and gather evidence to support your claim.
If the insurance company refuses to offer a reasonable settlement amount after an accident, it’s sometimes necessary to take them to court. If your lawyer must take your car accident lawsuit to trial, a judge or jury will typically be responsible for determining fault.
Steps to Recovery After an Auto Accident
The steps you take in the weeks and months that follow a car accident can have a significant impact on your health and legal standing. To protect your ability to recover both physically and financially:
- Seek prompt medical attention. If you have trouble finding a doctor to treat you, please give us a call to discuss your options.
- Be open and honest with your doctor about all of your symptoms to ensure everything is fully documented in your medical records.
- Follow your doctor’s orders to give yourself the best chance at a speedy recovery and to demonstrate to interested parties that you are taking your health seriously.
- Keep track of all your medical bills, repair invoices, and receipts from other out-of-pocket expenses related to the accident.
- Keep track of any time you are forced to miss at work while you recover. This will help to estimate the value of your lost wages.
- Save any evidence you have from the scene of the accident, including photos of the scene and contact information from eyewitnesses.
- Avoid sharing information or photos on social media while your claim is pending.
- Contact a knowledgeable car accident attorney for a free case review. Never give a statement to the insurance company without talking to an attorney first.
Contact Our Experienced Georgia Car Accident Lawyers Today
At Weaver Law Firm, we charge no fees on car accident cases unless we win compensation for you, and you’ll never pay us anything upfront or out-of-pocket. Our initial case reviews are always free, so don’t hesitate to contact us to speak directly with a knowledgeable Georgia car accident lawyer.