Rear-end auto accidents are no surprise in Colorado, as nearly half of all traffic accidents involve rear-end collisions. Across the United States, about 2.5 million rear-end accidents occur annually. They happen when a vehicle strikes the back of another car, and in some instances, can involve multiple vehicles. Why they’re so common points to the matter of negligence, as distracted driving, speeding, and driving under the influence are three of the main contributing factors.
One common misconception about rear-end accidents is that they’re often minor or don’t usually result in serious injuries. That may be true for some victims, but it’s not the case for all rear-end accidents. Not only do rear-end accidents cause significant property damage, but they may also severely injure drivers and passengers. Rear-end accident injuries differ from person to person, depending on the accident’s nature, vehicle speed, and body position. Review some of the most common injuries you might sustain after a rear-end accident below.
Whiplash and Neck Injuries
Whiplash is the most commonly reported injury in rear-end accidents. This is understandable because whiplash occurs when the head is rapidly and suddenly jerked back and forth. When a vehicle slams into the rear of your car, the impact can slightly or aggressively jolt your neck and head. Minor cases of whiplash may damage the neck’s soft tissue, resulting in neck pain, stiffness, headaches, and tenderness in upper body extremities.
More severe whiplash can occur when your neck is forcefully moved, which increases the risk of tearing neck muscles, nerves, and ligaments. This may cause an accident victim to sustain a debilitating neck injury, such as a herniated disc, facet joint injury, or neck fracture—all of which require extensive medical treatment and rehabilitation to recover from.
Head and Brain Injuries
Similar to whiplash and neck injuries, high-speed rear-end collisions may result in a head or brain injury. Injuries to the skull and brain are not to be taken lightly, as they may be life-threatening. Head injuries occur when a violent force shifts the brain out of place and pushes it against the skull. Again, depending on the strength of the force, an accident victim may suffer a concussion, traumatic brain injury, or brain bleed.
Concussions are more on the minor end of the spectrum, but they still need to be monitored and treated. There are various levels and types of traumatic brain injuries; however, you can expect to notice the following symptoms:
- Nausea or vomiting
- Vision or speech issues
- Difficulty concentrating or sleeping
Back and Spinal Cord Injuries
The blunt force trauma in rear-end accidents can cause tissues in the spine to sustain critical damage. The spinal cord makes up the back and is one of the most sensitive yet essential body structures. Even a seemingly insignificant injury to this region can lead to chronic back pain and disability.
Back and spinal cord injuries are common occurrences in rear-end accidents because the back endures large amounts of force and pressure. Accident victims can easily suffer whiplash and soft tissue damage. When an auto accident produces an intense force, accident victims may develop herniated discs, sciatica, spondylolisthesis, or a spinal fracture—which are all catastrophic forms of spinal cord injuries that may result in loss of function and immense pain.
Disfigurement and Scarring Injuries
A catastrophic injury often leaves victims with long-lasting external complications such as physical or facial disfigurement and scarring. Not only is it difficult to cope with unexpected injuries, but scars and disfigurement also act as reminders of the insurmountable pain that took place in an auto accident.
Scars can form after the skin is pierced or burned in an auto accident. When lacerations are deep, everything from the surface of the skin to internal bones can be disfigured. Scarring and disfigurement can be long-lasting or permanent and typically require long-term medical treatment and emotional care.
Speak to a Colorado Auto Accident Lawyer Today
When you’re in an auto accident that results in injuries, you need a team of compassionate and competent professionals who are willing to guide you through these challenging legal territories. The personal injury attorneys at Mintz Law Firm specialize in handling rear-end auto accidents in Colorado. We can help successfully resolve your personal injury case by obtaining the maximum compensation you need to pay for medical bills and other injury-related losses.
At Mintz Law Firm, our attorneys have collectively helped clients achieve substantial recoveries for their injuries for over 150 years. Throughout Colorado, clients come to us with their most elaborate cases because they value our promise: to be transparent 100% of the time and always be available when we’re needed most. To schedule your free, zero-obligation consultation today, call (303) 462-2999 or complete a contact form.