The most common accident giving rise to a personal injury claim involves the car that was part of the accident. Car accidents vary in severity. A person in a low speed accident can receive major personal injuries while a person involved in a high speed collision can walk away unscathed.
What to do if you are in a car accident
Even the best drivers can be subject to car accidents. Doing the right thing, in the right way, at the right time, may save a life, and it can often help to avoid legal problems. If you’ve been in an accident, personal injury lawyer William Manusky recommends doing these things: Stop your car, no matter how slight the accident and no matter whose fault, and do whatever possible to alert oncoming traffic to any obstruction caused by the vehicles involved in the accident. Assist any injured persons by calling an ambulance and by rendering first aid if you know how. Call the police. Identify the other driver and, if possible, get his or her insurance information. Get the names and addresses of passengers and witnesses. Take notes of all significant circumstances concerning the accident. Make no comments on the accident, admit nothing and sign nothing. Don’t leave the scene until all the injured have been assisted, the police have investigated, you have notes about the other driver and his or her insurance, witnesses have been identified and you have taken photos if you were able. Notify your insurance representative and send a written notice as soon as possible.
Who is responsible
If the other driver is found negligent, then he or she is responsible for all of your damages. Negligence is the failure to take proper care to do something. That is, negligence is compared to what a normal person would have done in the same situation. If you are injured or damaged because someone else acted in a negligent manner, you may have a cause of action against the person who acted unreasonably. It is important to consult an attorney to understand your rights if you may have been injured by the negligence of another. For more information about negligence, consult a qualified personal injury lawyer.
Whiplash, especially from car accidents, is an injury of the soft tissues, ligaments and joints of the cervical spine caused by the neck being bent forcibly and violently forward and then backward or vice versa. This type of injury most commonly results from sudden acceleration or deceleration, as in an auto accident. However, some degree of whiplash may occur in other accidents as well.
Symptoms may include muscle stiffness and swelling, pain and lack of muscle control.
Recurrence of whiplash injuries
Timely evaluation and appropriate treatment are the key factors in determining the victim’s prognosis. Studies suggest that whiplash victims will have a poor prognosis if they fail to seek treatment immediately. Some basic whiplash injuries can last for as long as six months after the accident. Almost all experts agree that prompt evaluation and treatment can improve a patient’s prognosis.
Numbness, shooting pains and tingling arm, hand and leg pain, as well as numbness, can indicate a very serious injury requiring immediate medical attention. These can be the first signs of serious nerve, spinal cord, disk and/or neurological injury. In the event of the onset of such symptoms, it is best to consult immediately with an orthopedic doctor, a neurologist, or a neurosurgeon. Many chiropractors have relationships with such doctors, or general primary care physicians, and might be able to refer you.
There are two msin types of head injury: an open injury — that is, one that penetrates or opens the skull — and a closed head injury. In the case of a penetrating head injury, a gun-shot wound, for example, the skull and scalp are exposed and the brain is harmed by the path of the bullet through the brain tissue. Because the resulting brain dysfunction is related to the specific area of the path of the bullet, this type of injury is usually categorized as “focal brain injury“. A closed head injury, caused by a rear-end automobile collision, for example, can result whether or not the head is struck, or from blunt trauma to the head, or from any other type of situation where the head is caused to snap rapidly back and forth, creating movement of the brain within the skull. The inside of the skull is not smooth; rather, it is rough, and a closed head injury often results in a variety of neurological problems.
Many people involved in car crashes may sustain a mild traumatic brain injury without actually striking their heads. It is, however, recognized that even such mild traumatic brain injuries can be devastating and permanent. If you have experienced a loss of consciousness or a concussion in an accident, it is very possible that a brain injury may have occurred. Symptoms may include memory loss, headaches, fatigue, inability to concentrate and a number of personality changes. These symptoms may be evidence of a serious brain injury. In order to determine whether you have suffered such an injury and the extent of the damage, it is necessary to undergo neuropsychological testing and evaluation by trained professionals. If you are suffering from one or more of these symptoms as a result of an accident, you should contact an attorney who specializes in head injury.