When we think of "low-speed accidents," you may be thinking of minor fender benders or small, seemingly harmless bumps. How much harm can a collision at low speed actually cause? The answer is more complex than it seems. In this article, we'll dive into everything you need to know about low-speed accidents and what lingering after-accident symptoms to be aware of if you have been in a low-speed accident.
Low-speed accidents are generally defined as collisions that occur at 10-15 miles per hour. These accidents, or "fender benders", typically occur at intersections, parking lots, or in congested traffic. Most people are under the impression that these accidents are unlikely to cause serious injury. However, while vehicles are usually damaged very little, the human body is at a higher risk of injury. At only 7 miles per hour, an individual may suffer injuries that require expertise from a medical doctor or physical therapist.
At Westlake Injury Law, we specialize in helping injured car accident victims get the compensation they deserve– especially if your injuries exacerbated a preexisting condition. Your rights are worth fighting for. If you’ve been injured, contact our office at (805) 954-9234 to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.
Most Common Injuries in Low-Speed Accidents
Contrary to what many people believe, even a low-speed accident can lead to various injuries. The human body is much more delicate and vulnerable than we think. Many believe these small and minor accidents can't cause significant harm.
Some common injuries that can occur in low-speed accidents include:
One of the more well-known injuries when discussing low-speed accidents. Whiplash is when the neck and head are forcefully thrust backward and forward - straining the muscles and ligaments in the neck. Symptoms don't usually occur right away. Neck pain, stiffness, headaches, and cognitive issues are all signs that you could suffer from whiplash following a low-speed accident.
Soft Tissue Injuries
Muscles, tendons, and ligaments can be strained or torn even in low-speed collisions. Pain, swelling, and reduced range of motion are all possible symptoms that these injuries can lead to. Sudden jolts of pain are also common signs of soft tissue injuries after an accident.
It's paramount to think about how the brain experiences much acceleration and deceleration within the brain during any collision. It can result in concussion, or mild traumatic brain injury with symptoms like headaches, dizziness, confusion, and memory issues.
Bruising and Contusions
Occasionally, when in a low-speed collision, the seat belt can tighten abruptly, or occupants can strike parts of the vehicle's interior. When this happens, it can bring forth many minor injuries, causing discomfort and pain in the form of bruises and contusions.
Low-speed accidents can still injure the spine. When you are hit with a sudden jolt of impact, it can strain or damage the spinal disks or vertebrae. Back pain, numbness, or radiating pain down the legs or arms are all possible symptoms of a back injury after an accident.
It could be hard to remember things as well as concentrating or even shifts in mood after a low-speed accident. These symptoms are all due to a mild traumatic brain injury.
Numbness and Tingling
If you feel symptoms of numbness or tingling, it might indicate nerve damage.
In car accidents, it is important to remember that the impact speed isn't always correlated with the severity of injuries. As we’ve learned, many injuries with delayed, late-onset symptoms can occur weeks after an accident at a low rate of speed.
The human body's fragile nature, coupled with the intense and complex physical forces during collisions, makes it imperative to seek medical attention even if you don’t feel injured. Your health and well-being are most important, and understanding the potential risks of low-speed accidents allows you to put yourself and your health first in all situations.
Seeking Legal Help
If you are dealing with the painful aftermath of an accident, trust attorneys with a proven track record. You can have the utmost confidence in Westlake Injury Law - we care about our clients and deliver consistent results that help ease the stress of a potentially traumatic accident. We'll fight for you to get the maximum compensation possible in every case. Have you been in an accident? Contact our office at (805) 954-9234 to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.