Frequently Asked Questions About Traffic Accidents
Traffic accidents happen. You don’t want them to, and you certainly don’t want them to happen to you, but traffic accidents do happen. The Department of Transportation estimated that nearly 2.5 million people were injured in traffic accidents in 2015. That’s nearly 1 percent of the total U.S. population. So the question becomes not can it happen, but what happens if you are in a traffic accident. Why do they happen? What are common injuries? The questions abound.
Common Causes of Traffic Accidents Generally Involve Driver Error
Federal statistics indicate that human error is the root cause of most traffic accidents. These errors include:
- Driver’s inattention
- Internal and external distractions;
- Insufficient attention to surrounding conditions and occurrences.
- Other critical causes of traffic accidents are decision errors such as driving too fast for conditions, taking curves too fast, making false assumptions about other drivers’ actions, and illegal lane changes.
What are the Most Common Injuries in Traffic Accidents?
Obviously, a traffic accident can result in practically any kind of injury, given the speed and physical forces usually involved. However, studies show that most injuries fall into certain categories:
- Brain and Head Injuries: Traumatic brain injury is a common result of automobile accidents and can have far-reaching consequences, even for so-called mild injuries.
- Spinal Injuries: Spinal injuries, including back and neck injuries, also are common and can range from whiplash or neck strain to disc injuries and cervical dislocation. Spinal cord injuries likewise are fairly common in auto accidents and can have severe consequences, up to impaired extremity function or even paralysis. The lower back is the most common site of back injuries, from relatively minor sprains and strains to herniated discs and fractured vertebrae. The effects of these injuries can range from pain to limited mobility. Spinal injuries do not always show symptoms immediately.
- Other common injuries include facial injuries and internal injuries. In a traffic accident, your face can be exposed to broken glass, striking the steering wheel or dashboard, not to mention the airbag or the windshield. The sheer physical forces and strains involved in a car accident can result in internal injuries. Even in the absence of immediate symptoms, it is wise to be checked for such injuries following a traffic accident.
Should I Hire a Lawyer?
Practical concerns can and should include whether you are entitled to compensation for your injuries. Taking it upon yourself to negotiate with the other party’s lawyers or insurance company might not be wise. At least one government agency has determined that personal injury accidents do not lend themselves to self-representation. The circumstances surrounding personal injuries from accidents tend to be complex, requiring investigative and legal experience most people simply don’t have.
If You Have Been Injured in an Accident in the Vidalia area, Contact the Personal Injury Lawyers of Smith and Tillery
If you have suffered an injury in a traffic accident in the Vidalia area, you should consult a personal injury attorney to determine what your rights are. You might be entitled to compensation.
The lawyers of Smith and Tillery are experienced in personal injury law and can assist you in protecting your rights and obtaining just compensation in these types of situations. You can reach us at (912) 537-3030 or through our online contact form.