Low Speed Accidents Can Cause Injury
Far too many people believe you cannot be injured in a low speed car accident. Many times, people associate the amount of property damage to the vehicle with the type of injury the occupants must have had. While the common misconception is the more significant the visible damage to the vehicle, the more significant injury to the occupant – this is not always correct. An occupant’s age, medical history, force of impact and location within the vehicle are other factors which play a significant role in whether an injury can occur.
In an article published by the Society of Automotive Engineers, Inc. entitled “Lack of Relationship Between Vehicle Damage and Occupant Injury,” the author explored whether there was a clear correlation between visible property damage and the severity of injury to the occupant. The author’s conclusion was that the amount of visible damage does not necessarily dictate the severity of injury to the vehicle’s occupants. Another article written by Michael Freeman, concluded that property damage is an unreliable predictor of injury risk or outcome.
While there is ongoing debate about what the significance of visible damage means to occupant injuries, there is no real debate that vehicles are being made safer today with crush zones designed to absorb and disperse the forces of impact. However, where there is no crush or damage to the vehicle, those forces get transferred to the vehicle occupants and can cause significant injury. Despite arguing otherwise, insurance companies have known this for years. For example, State Farm in 2012 posted an article on its website designed to assist individuals who had been in a car accident on what to keep in mind following a crash. In that post, since removed but reproduced for you above, State Farm acknowledges that low-speed crashes can cause injuries to vehicle occupants.
My Own Experience
I have personally represented car accident victims who have walked away without significant or lasting injury in crashes where you would expect significant injury – especially when their trunk ends up in the back seat. I have also helped individuals who have sustained serious injury in a crash with little or no visible property damage.
While pictures of visible property damage are always more interesting to look at than medical records, they are not always indicative of whether the occupant was injured and, if so, to what level of severity.
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If you have been injured in a car accident or as a pedestrian, call 407.216.2000 or click HERE for a free attorney case review. I have helped hundreds of accident injury victims find their justice and I would be honored to help you as well.
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