- In accidents
Understanding statistics and probabilities surrounding traffic accidents make some feel more secure on the road and makes others feel being behind the wheel is a constant imminent threat to their life. But the fact of the matter is that there is information available that teaches us tremendous amounts about vehicle collisions and safety features. For example, when strictly considering a vehicle as two-sided (driver and passenger sides), one side is more likely to get hit in an accident than the other. These facts apply to collisions in California and the United States wholly. Other countries may present differently due to distinct driving laws, such as driving on the opposite side of the road.
Dangers Of The Passenger Side
While front-end and rear-end collisions are the most common types of traffic collisions, the passenger side is more likely to be hit in a side-impact collision. When making a left turn at an intersection, the passenger side is exposed to potential impact due to crossing the opposite traffic flow. There may also be an unconscious bias by the driver to protect their own side of the vehicle. Either way, the driver’s side of a vehicle is slightly safer than the passenger side.
Side Impact Collision Injuries
Every traffic collision is unique and can result in different injuries. However, some types of injuries tend to arise more frequently in side-impact collisions than in other types of accidents. The force of a side impact can cause head injuries, which can lead to a traumatic brain injury or TBI. If the injured party fails to seek medical attention after a TBI, the injuries could become exponentially worse or even fatal.
Car accidents often cause drivers and passengers to jolt around in their seats if properly secured. When accidents occur at high speeds with heavy vehicles, the jolting can be so severe as to cause whiplash and other neck and spine injuries. Other examples of neck and spine injuries include slipped and herniated discs, spinal cord trauma, nerve damage, neck and spine fractures, and paralysis. These injuries can be particularly detrimental to someone’s way of life. Another issue with neck injuries like whiplash is that the victim may not feel symptoms while present at the crash scene or even days or weeks later. If gone unchecked, the plaintiff could settle an accident claim without even realizing they incurred whiplash in the accident.
A passenger-side passenger could also be crushed in a side-impact collision, which can cause various injuries all over the body. Crushing injuries to the chest, abdomen, and pelvis could damage vital organs or cause internal bleeding. These injuries can be more difficult to identify, making them more deadly. And, of course, someone injured in a side-impact collision could experience injuries to their arms and legs, especially on the side of the vehicle which was hit.
Side airbags aren’t a mandatory safety feature but are becoming more common on vehicles in California and across the country. They help vehicle manufacturers meet federal safety requirements for side-impact collisions. Side airbags can be manufactured like a curtain to protect the passenger’s head better. As a result, side airbags can reduce the risk of fatality in a driver’s side collision by 37% in cars and 52% in SUVs. Far-side airbags are even less standard but are meant to prevent the driver and front passenger from barreling into each other during an accident. Rear-window airbags are also less common than standard and side airbags but can prevent passengers in the back seat during a side-impact collision.
Experienced an injury from a car crash? Law Offices of Samer Habbas & Associates can clarify your legal options. To schedule your initial case consultation, call 888-848-5084 or visit our website today.
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