Dangers of Side-Impact Car Accidents

When you suffer injuries in a dangerous side-impact car accident, you could end up with far more serious injuries than may occur in other types of crashes. Commonly, the dangers of side-impact car accidents become heightened because they frequently occur at intersections where both cars are moving. This generates additional force on both vehicles and on the people riding in those vehicles. Additionally, side-impact crashes often cause one or both drivers to lose control after the impact, which heightens the danger, as neither driver can attempt to avoid additional impacts.

Whether one driver ran a stop sign, ran a red light, was going too fast to stop in time, or slid into the intersection because of an icy road, the side-impact car accident puts everyone involved in danger of serious injuries and, potentially, fatality.

Even a sideswipe-type of side-impact car accident can be quite dangerous, as both vehicles may be moving at significant speed at the time of the collision. The force of being struck in the side in a sideswipe crash could cause one or both cars to spin wildly out of control, creating additional impacts with other cars or with stationary objects. Should the sideswipe side-impact car crash push one vehicle off the road, the danger of a rollover accident becomes much higher.

What Exactly Is a Side-Impact Car Accident, and Why Are They So Dangerous?

A side-impact car accident occurs when one car or truck hits the side of another vehicle – either with the front or side of the vehicle – potentially at a high rate of speed. It’s also possible for a side-impact crash to occur when one vehicle is sitting motionless and the other vehicle is moving. Although side-impact motor vehicle crashes are most common at intersections along highways or on a residential street grid, they also can happen in a parking lot where rows of parked cars meet areas near exits to the lot.

Regardless of where it occurs, an impact from the side can be quite serious for the people riding in the vehicles. This impact can cause the doors of the vehicle to crush inward, potentially trapping people inside the car, where it’s tougher for first responders to provide first aid. Older cars may not have side airbags, meaning the victims of the crash may not have extra protection in this type of impact to reduce the severity of any potential injuries.

It’s important to note that a side-impact accident could damage the front door, the back door, or both. If a child or baby is riding in the rear seat of a car or SUV near the door at the time of the impact, this could result in quite serious injuries, even if the child or baby is in a proper car seat. Side-impact collisions are scary situations for everyone involved.

Common Types of Side-impact Motor Vehicle Accidents

A side-impact car accident typically will fit into one of three categories.

T-Bone Accident

This type of side-impact car accident occurs when two vehicles approach from non-opposing directions and collide with each other, usually in an intersection. This collision is referred to as a  “T-bone” accident since the moment of impact between the vehicles often creates a T-shape.

As our motorcycle accident lawyers know, it can be especially dangerous for a motorcyclist to be involved in a T-bone accident. If the motorcycle strikes the vehicle in the side, the motorcyclist is likely to fly off the bike and suffer significant injuries when hitting the ground. And should the motor vehicle hit the side of a motorcycle in this type of collision, the motorcyclist could be subject to crushing injuries if the motor vehicle tips the bike in the collision and then goes over the top.

Sideswipe From the Same Direction

This type of accident occurs when the side of the first vehicle hits the side of another vehicle while traveling adjacent to it. A sideswipe from the same direction often occurs when one motorist makes a hasty or incorrect turn or attempts to change lanes without checking each side to see if the maneuver would result in colliding with another vehicle.

Sideswipe From the Opposite Direction

This type of accident occurs when two vehicles are traveling in opposite directions and a vehicle suddenly crosses the center line and slides into another vehicle. The sudden veering into the opposite lane could be caused by a distracted motorist, a mechanical issue, a motorist under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or another form of reckless or negligent driving.

You May Have the Right to Seek Compensation for Your Injuries

Unfortunately, side-impact car accidents are more common in Minnesota and Wisconsin than we’d like to see. A side-impact car accident lawyer can help you figure out your right to compensation in this type of case. You may be facing a long-term recovery that leaves you with significant medical bills and an inability to work. You should not have to suffer these financial losses when you did nothing wrong.

Serious Injuries Resulting from a Side-impact Car Accident

Unfortunately, it is quite common for a motorist involved in a side-impact car accident to suffer serious and debilitating bodily injuries. The severity of injuries is typically associated with the fact that the side sections of many vehicles lack the same level of impact absorption as the front and rear of a vehicle. Examples of serious injuries stemming from side-impact car accidents include:

  • Broken bones
  • Fractured ribs
  • Fractured pelvis
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Concussion or severe traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
  • Head and neck lacerations
  • Punctured lung
  • Aortic dissection
  • Internal organ damage
  • Nerve damage
  • Death.

Because of the severity of this type of accident, you can have injuries that could change your life forever. That is why these types of crashes often result in significant financial judgments for the injured party. Seeking help from a personal injury lawyer in Minnesota or Wisconsin can give you the best chance at receiving the compensation that truly reflects your injuries and your long-term health outlook.

Examples of Financial Restitution in a Side-impact Car Accident Injury Claim

If someone else caused the accident, you have the right to seek compensation, including:

  • Reimbursement for medical expenses
  • Reimbursement for the costs associated with any long-term therapy or treatment
  • Reimbursement for lost income or the loss of future income
  • Compensation for the pain, suffering, and inconvenience stemming from the side-impact car accident.

A car accident attorney in Minnesota or Wisconsin can help you determine whether you have the right to seek compensation against another negligent party. Minnesota statute 604.01 determines legal liability and comparative fault in these types of cases, as does Wisconsin statute 893.54, and your attorney can explain how to protect your right to seek compensation.

Schedule a No-Cost, Confidential Case Review with Our Side-impact Car Accident Lawyer

If you or a family member was seriously injured in a side-impact car accident that you believe another motorist caused, contact a personal injury attorney with Tyroler Leonard Injury Law to determine your legal options. Depending on what happened, it may be possible to receive compensation through a personal injury lawsuit for your injuries and losses resulting from a side-impact car accident injury.  Contact Tyroler Leonard Injury Law at (651) 259-1113 today to learn more about your legal rights and to ensure they remain protected.

Attorney Rachel Sperling Leonard

Attorney Rachel Sperling Leonard

A partner of Tyroler Leonard Injury Law, Ms. Sperling Leonard practices exclusively in personal injury and wrongful death claims. Specifically, she specializes in car accidents, motorcycle accidents, boating accidents, dog bites, dog attacks, slip and falls, trip and falls, sexual assaults/abuse and other assaults. Some representative cases of Ms. Sperling Leonard’s in the last few years include: a $1 million settlement for an individual injured in a car crash, a $750,000.00 for a man injured when he slipped and fell, a $455,000.00 settlement for an individual injured after falling, and multiple $250,000.00 settlements for individuals injured in motorcycle and auto accidents, among many others. She frequently turns insurance company denials into fair-value offers.
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