Side-impact collisions occur when the front or rear end of one car impacts the side of
another car. There are many factors that contribute to how extensive the damage to the
vehicle will be, as well as how severe the injuries to the passengers and drivers in both
cars will be.
Depending on how fast the cars are going and the angles at which the cars strike each
other, these broadside collisions can range for minor to deadly. The comparative vehicle
weight and construction of both cars is also an important deciding factor in the severity of
the accident. Finally, newer cars tend to have more advanced safety features, and
therefore their passengers tend to suffer less severe injuries.
Safety features such as side curtain or side-impact airbags are invaluable in providing
additional protection to the driver and passenger. Without them, the head, neck and chest
are often left open to injury, resulting in serious injuries. There is very little car to
cushion the blow of a side-impact, therefore the occupants of the car being hit from the
side are the most injured. Most fatalities in side-impact collisions result from brain
injuries, and side-impact air bags are especially designed to prevent these. They also
remain inflated for a period of time, therefore allowing an extended period of protection
in case a car does roll or spin.
There are several possible scenarios that may result from a broadside collision:
- A side impact can cause the car suffering the impact to go into a spin or even to
rollover. Sports Utility Vehicles and Trucks are more prone to rollover, because
they are taller and have a different center of gravity.
- A spin or rollover can lead to further collisions with other cars on the road.
- Because airbags only deploy once, passengers can not rely upon airbags to
provide protection from collisions that might follow.
How can broadside collisions be avoided? They are most commonly the result of a driver
running a stop sign or a traffic light, or failing to yield the way in another manner.
Whether this is the result of drinking and driving or simply distracted driving, the results
are almost always severe. The speed at which people most often run red lights results in
severe side-impact collisions.
Unfortunately, if you are the victim of a side-impact collision, your injuries will often be
much more severe than those of the driver who crashed into you. The injuries that result
span a wide range, from leg and hip injuries, to neck, back and head injuries. As
previously mentioned, brain injuries can result, and can often be fatal. Even flying shards
of glass from broken windows and the windshield can result in severe injuries.
If you have been in a side-impact collision, your injuries are likely severe. Proper
compensation will ensure that you get the medical treatment you need. Insurance
companies will pressure you to sign a settlement, but you should contact an attorney first.
Only an experienced car wreck attorney can safeguard your rights while you focus on
your physical health and recovery.