Rear-end collisions make up about 50% of all two-vehicle accidents in Georgia and across the United States. In 2019, rear-end collisions were part of 2,346 fatal crashes, which was about 7% of all fatal accidents. Other types of accidents can cause many injuries, ranging from superficial to catastrophic.
Varied injuries during an auto accident
Personal injuries suffered in an auto accident can vary depending on how fast the two cars were going. A minor accident at low speeds can still cause massive damage.
During an auto accident, the momentum in both cars shifts. The sudden motion of a car not moving can be traumatic. The sudden movement forward can be as bad as the sudden movement backward from the seat belt. Depending on speeds, organs can shift or rupture, and individuals can be subject to head and spine injuries.
Whiplash is a common injury after an auto accident. Whiplash comes from a sudden backward motion of the spine and neck. Neck muscles and ligaments can tear from the force. Neck pain and stiffness are the most common symptoms of whiplash. Other symptoms include dizziness, fatigue, headaches and limited range of motion. Serious whiplash cases may involve memory and concentration difficulties.
A herniated disc causes extreme neck or back pain. Between each vertebra is a soft tissue disc. After a car accident, the discs can rupture. A slipped disc can press against nerves, which causes weakness, pain, numbness and tingling in limbs. Herniated disks are usually in the lower back but can happen in the neck.
When people have their hands on the wheel during an accident, their arms absorb some of the impact. Common arm injuries include stress fractures and sprained wrists. More serious arm injuries include tendon damage and dislocated shoulders. Headaches and migraines are common after an auto accident. Muscle spasms may cause headaches, and concussions are a risk after a rear-end collision.
Seat belts and airbags save lives but do have risks. A seat belt can stop a person from launching from their car during an accident, reducing injuries by about 50%. However, seat belts that stop a person also force their neck and spine backward, and airbags launch with enough force to break facial bones. If someone receives these kinds of injuries during a car accident, the responsible party may have to pay for damages.