Each and every day, thousands of Americans are hurt in car accidents. Some crashes are big, and others are small. Many result in injuries requiring months—if not years—of recovery, treatment, and rehabilitation. If you or a loved one has been hurt in an accident, you may be able to file an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit for compensation. Oftentimes, your compensation is determined by the type of injuries you have suffered.
Common Car Accidents Injuries
Not every crash and fender bender is tracked in Missouri. Many Missouri car accidents are so minor that both parties agree to walk away and resolve their differences with a handshake or cash payment.
However, we do know this: in 2014, almost 50,000 people sustained injuries in Missouri car crashes—injuries that were serious enough to be noted and registered by law enforcement.
While no two car crashes are exactly the same, certain types of injuries are commonly sustained in accidents. They can be minor injuries, like:
- Cuts, scrapes, and superficial bruising. Even minor fender-benders can still cause some degree of damage. Cracked glass can cut the skin, while an airbag deployment may result in extensive bruising—even broken bones.
- Soft tissue damage. Soft tissue injuries, or those affecting the muscles, tendons, and ligaments, are among the most common types of car accident injuries. Oftentimes, soft tissue injuries are not apparent in the immediate aftermath of a crash. Whiplash, for instance, can take days to develop.
- Lacerations. Even a low-speed collision can toss around objects inside a car. Simple, everyday items—like cigarette lighters, purses, or soda bottles—can turn into dangerous missiles. So can flying glass and broken mechanical parts.
- Burns. Car crashes can spill fuel or otherwise cause hot automotive parts to ignite. Burns can be minor or severe and often take a long time to heal.
Other types of injury can be comparatively severe, including:
- Broken and fractured bones. Airbag deployments, impacts, and roll-over accidents can lead to broken bones. In a car accident, almost any bone can be broken, depending on the type of accident and its severity. However, commonly broken bones include the ribs and those in the arms and legs.
- Spinal trauma. The spine can be very sensitive to pressure—and there are few pressures greater than those generated by a vehicular impact. A crash can cause breakages in your vertebrae or even cause your spinal column to compress. Spinal injuries can be very severe; some may lead to immediate or gradual paralysis.
- Head injuries. Traumatic head injuries can be as commonplace as a concussion or as severe as intracranial bleeding. Many head injuries can only be detected by a doctor.
- Organ damage. The sheer force of impact, coupled with broken or displaced bones, can lend to extensive organ damage. Some forms of organ damage can be fatal if not quickly identified and treated.
- Death. In 2014, about 766 Missourians died in car accidents. If you lost a loved one in a car crash, you might be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
What to Do After a Car Accident Injury
You should always—always!—visit a doctor after any sort of car accident or crash. Even if you do not believe you were hurt, a physician can help identify, diagnose, and treat injuries you were not aware of. Head and spinal column injuries, for example, may present simple symptoms that can be mistaken for regular aches and pains—but can have disastrous long-term consequences when left untreated.
A personal injury lawyer can help you make sense of your diagnosis and work to ensure that you do not pay anything out of pocket. You may be able to receive substantial damages for your injuries, depending on their type and how they have impacted your day-to-day life.
After all: you should never be stuck paying for an accident that was not your fault.
Have You Been Injured in a Car Accident in Missouri?
If you've been injured in a car accident, you need to speak with an experienced car accident attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cape Girardeau office directly at 573.335.3359 to schedule your initial consultation.