Why Low Speed Accidents Can Still Cause Serious Injuries
Different types of motor vehicle accidents come with their own risk factors. A low-speed or low-impact collision may cause less property damage than a high-speed crash but studies have shown that soft-tissue injuries and other potential lasting damage are still a serious concern.
If you have been injured in a low-speed accident, do not let the at-fault insurance company bully you into giving up on a settlement. If you were injured in a low-impact crash, contact a personal injury lawyer for help.
What is a low-speed car accident?
A low-speed car accident typically describes a crash that occurs under 10 miles per hour. Most of the time, there is little to no damage to the vehicle but the potential for serious injuries to the body is there.
Common low-speed crash scenarios:
- A car in a parking lot crashing into a car as it backs out of a spot.
- A car that comes to a stop and then rear-ends the car in front of them because they believe it is safe to move forward*.
- A car rear-ends a vehicle at a stop sign or stop light because they did not come to a complete stop in time*.
*The second two examples are types of low-speed rear-impact car accidents.
Challenges with low-speed accidents
Apart from the risk of injuries, low-speed accidents can be very stressful because insurance companies will often try to deny claims outright due to the lack of or minimal property damage. Their excuse may be that it’s not possible that your injuries were a result of the accident when there is little to no damage to your vehicle. In many cases, the only way to get the at-fault insurance company to pay for your medical bills and pain and suffering settlement is to hire an experienced car accident lawyer who can negotiate on your behalf.
Low-speed collisions can still cause serious injuries
Rear-end low-impact injuries happen on a regular basis. That’s because, even in accidents where vehicles were traveling at 5 miles per hour, a sudden rear impact to a vehicle can cause an occupant’s neck to whip backward and then forward with the force of the impact. The neck can whip back and forth at a higher acceleration than the acceleration of the vehicle, which causes significantly more injury to the occupants than to the vehicle itself. This type of injury is known as whiplash. Other issues can also occur in “low-impact” crashes, including herniated disks that can lead to chronic pain, weakness, numbness or tingling, and reduced function that can linger for months to years.
It has been claimed that 85 percent of the neck injuries caused by car accidents are the result of rear-end collisions and that 10-15 percent of those who suffer from soft tissue injuries after car accidents are never able to achieve a full functional recovery. In some cases, surgery is required.
Seek the help of a car accident attorney
If you or a loved one was injured in a collision because of the negligence of another, contact a personal injury lawyer to discuss your legal rights. Let an experienced car accident attorney fight for the full compensation that you deserve. It is not uncommon to receive a settlement from the insurance company that is five to ten times larger with the help of a lawyer. Call the personal injury lawyers at Tario & Associates, P.S. in Bellingham, WA today for a FREE consultation! We have been representing residents of Whatcom County, Skagit County, Island County and Snohomish County since 1979. You will pay nothing up front and no attorney fees at all unless we recover damages for you!