October 23, 2022 | Car Accidents
Any one of the 169 car crashes that happen every day across Oklahoma, including in Oklahoma City, according to the state’s Highway Safety Office’s recent statistics, could result in harm to you. While these statistics show about two-thirds of all traffic crashes result only in property damage, the other portion does result in injuries, some of which are severe or fatal.
The damage from a rear-end collision can range from a dent or ding to your bumper to disabling and paralyzing injuries. The risk of severe harm or death increases if you are not wearing your seatbelt at the time of the crash. With or without a seat belt, though, rear-end collisions present the risk of neck and back injuries.
How Do Neck and Back Injuries Happen in Rear-End Collisions?
As the name suggests, a rear-end collision happens when one vehicle strikes you from behind. When this happens, the vehicle that strikes your vehicle transfers energy to your car. This is why in a rear-end collision, your car can be pushed forward while the striking car slows or even stops after the collision.
The amount of energy transferred is dependent on the speed and mass of the vehicle. The larger or heavier the vehicle, the more energy is transferred. Similarly, the faster the vehicle travels, the more energy that it transfers. Thus, a slow-moving truck that rear-ends you may cause injuries and damage similar to that caused by a faster-moving but much smaller car.
The energy transferred in a rear-end wreck impacts not just your vehicle but also you and the other occupants inside your car. You experience a sudden acceleration that pushes you into your seat. The seat strikes your back and can force your head and neck to snap backward.
If you react by impulsively applying your brakes, this can result in rapid deceleration. When this happens, your body, head, and neck are thrown forward. This can also happen if you are pushed forward and immediately strike another car in front of you.
All of these movements can put incredible stress and strain on your spine and neck. The greater the forces involved, the more violent the movements of your body and neck will be. And the more violent the movements of your body and neck, the greater the risk of injury to those body parts.
What Are Some Signs of Back and Neck Injuries After Rear-End Collisions?
In a violent wreck, it may be readily apparent that you suffered a back or neck injury.
Severe back and neck injuries can immobilize you temporarily or permanently. In such a case, you may not be able to move one or both of your arms or legs. You may not have any sensation in areas of your body. For these injuries, immediate medical treatment at a hospital is required.
More often, though, your first indication of a neck or back injury may surface hours or days after your wreck. You may feel stiff or sore in your back or neck. You should not ignore these symptoms, either.
If you notice the following symptoms, seek medical attention:
- Increasing pain
- Decreasing mobility
- Loss of sensation
Getting quick medical care can prevent further damage to your spine and neck.
How To Get Compensation for Back and Neck Injuries Caused By Rear-End Collisions
Your health insurance policy and car insurance policy will often cover treatment for back and neck injuries up to those policies’ limits. If your rear-end collision came about because of another driver’s carelessness or inattentiveness, you might be able to recover compensation from that driver’s auto liability insurance policy as well. You may also be able to file a personal injury lawsuit against them.
Contact the Oklahoma City Car Accident Lawyers at McGuire Law Firm Today for Free Consultation
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