CAN A LOW IMPACT ACCIDENT STILL CAUSE INJURY?
Many might think that just because a low impact car accident has occurred due to a low speed, there will either not be an injury or the injury will be too minor to address. However, that is not always the case. Speed is defined in three categories. 1-2 miles per hour up to 20-25 miles per hour is considered a “low speed” impact. 25-40 miles an hour is considered a “moderate speed” impact and finally, a “high speed” impact occurs at 40 miles per hour and over. Studies have shown that a rear-end impact at as little as 5 miles per hour can cause significant symptoms.
Factors and Force
There are a variety of factors that can contribute to the injury including but not limited to: vehicles involved, speed differential, vehicle weight, the location of impact, the direction of impact, head restraint location, seat failure, seat back angle, and seat back height. A typical automobile that weighs 2,000 pounds can cause an average impact force of about 3.7 tons driving at just 10 miles per hour. A 3,000-pound vehicle driving the same speed can almost double the impact force at an estimate of 5.6 tons. This much force, even at a low speed, can still cause significant injuries to passengers.
Common Injuries From Low Impact Accidents
Even at a low speed, car accidents can cause different kinds of cervical and lumbar injuries, or neck and back. One of the most common injuries that can occur to the neck is whiplash. “Whiplash occurs when the neck and head are suddenly forced backward and then forward, putting the cervical spine through lightning-quick motions and extreme stresses.” Typically, injuries to the neck and back extend beyond just soreness and need treatment, even if the accident was considered to be low impact. While some of these injuries can heal over time with the aid of an experienced physician sometimes, other more serious measures may need to be taken in order to put you back into the position you were in before the accident.
What Should You Do If Involved In A Low Impact Accident?
Even if you do not feel immediate pain or injury from the accident, you should still seek treatment from a medical provider. Often times, injuries do not appear until days or weeks later. Also, you may not even know you have suffered injury and may continue to perform normal tasks. However, you could be causing even more damage to your injury. Therefore, it is important to contact a physician to get checked out and make sure that everything is functioning properly. You should not take chances with your health.
You should also contact a qualified and experienced personal injury attorney. The Personal Injury Attorneys of the Nicoletti Law Firm offer a FREE no-obligation consultation where we can review your claim with you at no cost. Often times when there is minimum damage to the vehicle or it is a low impact accident, the insurance companies like to argue that your injuries could not have been caused by the accident. Let the Nicoletti Law Firm be an advocate and a voice for you with the insurance companies while you just focus on getting better. Call us today at (727) 845-5972 or fill out our Free Case Evaluation Form. Our attorneys will make sure that they understand the severity of what has happened to you so can obtain the compensation you deserve.