Car accidents can cause all types of injuries, from relatively minor injuries such as whiplash, to major injuries such as broken bones and brain injuries. Obviously, if you are suffering from a major injury, you should make an insurance claim through ICBC. However, moderate to less serious injuries should also be pursued with the assistance of a lawyer.
The purpose of this article is to describe common injuries resulting from car accidents.
Serious injuries are the easiest to identify because there will be physical signs of an abnormality and obvious pain. Broken bones, brain injuries (including concussions) and ruptured spinal cords are examples of common and severe injuries. Serious injuries require multiple doctor visits, sometimes to specialists. Occasionally, you will need surgery, continuing physiotherapy, extended medication and hospitalization periods.
It is essential to seek legal advice regarding serious injuries, since they often result in a life-long and significant loss of functionality. In other words, the possibility of returning to your pre-accident capabilities is materially reduced.
Moderate to mild injuries include whiplash, sprains, strains, headaches and soft-tissue damage. Unlike serious injuries, no physical damage seems to be apparent in the body. All physiological structures appear normal. But these types of injuries often lead to feelings of pain. For example, you may find that sitting for long periods of time or holding your neck in a certain position becomes painful, even if you had no difficulty performing these tasks before your accident.
Less serious injuries, like the ones discussed above, are notable for two reasons. One, car accidents involve many different forces coming from various directions at the same time. Even at low speeds, when these forces collide in an accident they can have an unpredictable effect on the body. Secondly, science supports the fact that the severity of an impact may have very little relation to the severity of an injury. Thus, a highly severe accident may not necessarily result in a severe injury (though it often does); but a seemingly minor accident can result in a serious injury.
Mike Coric is a personal injury lawyer who has represented victims of motor vehicle accidents throughout British Columbia for over 15 years. Mike has appeared at every level of Court in British Columbia and conducted trials before a judge and a jury. He acts only for plaintiffs and restricts his practice to BC car accidents and other personal injury circumstances. If you or someone you know has been injured and would like to speak with a lawyer, please call Mike at 604-736-3333.
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Correlating Crash Severity with Injury Risk, Injury Severity, and Long-term Symptoms in Low Velocity Motor Vehicle Collisions, Medical Science Monitor, October 2005; 11(10): RA316-321 by Arthur C. Croft and Michael D. Freeman.