Nobody expects to have a car accident or sustain injuries when they get in their car. Yet unfortunately motor vehicle accident injuries can happen at any time and any place, and sometimes the outcome can be deadly.
Road fatality data from the Department of Infrastructure, Regional Development and Cities shows that in 2019 there were 1,188 road deaths (This is 4.7% more than the same period in 2018). Overall, more Australians have died in traffic accidents than in both world wars and the Vietnam War combined. Car crash fatalities peaked in 1970 at 3,798 and dropped to 1,154 in 2014 thanks to factors like improved car safety, driver education, law enforcement and better road design.
So what are the most common kinds of injuries you’re likely to sustain in a motor vehicle accident? And how do you make a claim for compensation?
Common Injuries from Motor Vehicle Accidents
Some of the most common motor vehicle accident injuries include:
Whiplash refers to a neck injury caused by a severe jerk to the head making the head move violently away from the body as a result of sudden impact, such as another car hitting yours.
It is extremely common and can result in symptoms like neck pain, headaches, loss of movement in the neck and memory loss lasting for days or even weeks. It is important to note that sometimes the pain from whiplash is delayed for 24 hours or more after the incident.
Traumatic brain injury
Traumatic brain injuries are usually caused by a blow or other traumatic injury to the head or body. The degree of damage can depend on several factors, including the nature of the injury and the force of impact as a result of a car accident. Traumatic brain injury can result in bruising, soft tissue damage, bleeding and other physical damage to the brain. These injuries can result in long-term disability or death.
A traumatic brain injury can have wide-ranging physical and psychological effects, with some signs of the injury appearing immediately, while others form over time.
Spinal injuries are one of the most common motor vehicle accident injuries. Injuries to your spine means there has been damage to the muscles surrounding your spine, or damage to your spinal cord. These injuries can be very debilitating and often result in reduced mobility and chronic pain, with serious injuries having lifelong impacts such as a disability.
Car accident injuries are not always physical – the psychological trauma of the accident can have significant and long lasting impacts for some people. Psychological injuries can include post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, depression and a phobia of car travel.
Scarring and broken bones
You may sustain scrapes and cuts as a result of your car accident; caused by the impact of your vehicle or the other vehicle, or getting hit by loose projectiles in the car. Scrapes and cuts are usually painful and can pose a risk for infections and scarring in the long term, depending on their severity.
Broken bones are also a common car accident injury; particularly broken ribs due to the impact from seat-belts tightening or airbags deploying. Broken ribs can be very painful and require lengthy periods of rest and recovery. Broken arms, legs, hips and even shoulders are also common motor vehicle accident injuries.
Do I have a claim?
If you’ve suffered either a physical or mental injury as a result of a car accident, or have experienced a loss of income, you may be entitled to compensation.
Even if the accident was entirely or partially your fault, there may be avenues for compensation. While medical treatment is the most crucial step after an accident, it is also important to seek legal advice about your rights, as soon as you are able.
Shine Lawyers have expert car accident lawyers who can quickly establish if you have a claim for compensation and explain what you might be able to claim for. We will make the process as quick and easy as possible so you can focus on your recovery.
What if a child is involved?
If your child was injured in a motor vehicle accident, you can make a claim on their behalf. A child can’t make a claim on their own but a parent or legal guardian can bring it forward. The money is then held in trust for the child to benefit them later in life.
How can Shine Lawyers help?
If you’ve been injured in a motor vehicle accident, whether it was from a car, motorbike, bicycle, truck or any other vehicle, you may have a claim for compensation. Shine Lawyers have legal experts who can guide you through the process in a straightforward fashion and represent you on a no win, no fee basis. To find out more information or to get in touch, visit our motor vehicle accidents page.