Side Impact Car Accidents

Side-impact accidents are among the deadliest accidents on Massachusetts roadways. These accidents often occur at intersections and involve parts of a vehicle that are the least structurally sound. As a result, vehicle occupants sitting behind driver or passenger doors are at risk of being cut, crushed, and even killed.

The attorneys at Jeffrey Glassman Injury Lawyers know the dangers linked to side-impact crashes in Massachusetts. We understand that these crashes are more likely to be fatal than either front-end or rear-end accidents. A car is generally at its most vulnerable in a side-impact collision.

Our Boston car accident attorneys will thoroughly review the facts and circumstances of your accident and help you decide on the best course of action. Your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering should all be considered when filing a claim for damages.

Drivers who run red lights are commonly responsible for such accidents, as are those who fail to yield the right of way at intersections or stop signs. Our attorneys will relentlessly work to ensure that all liable parties pay the price for their negligent actions.

Proving Negligence in a Side-Impact Car Accident

Bad Boston drivers have become the stuff of legend. We routinely make the list of the worst or rudest drivers in the nation. Unfortunately, red-light running and aggressive driving continue to cause many car accidents in Massachusetts each year, including sideswipes and side-impact collisions. Side-impact accidents, also known as T-bone or broadside collisions, can cause extensive damage to a car and severe injury to its drivers and passengers.

A side-impact car accident occurs when one vehicle strikes another vehicle on its side. This type of crash can occur head-on or at an angle. Due to the severe vehicle damage that a side-impact collision can cause, these accidents often result in catastrophic injury or death.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reports that side-impact accidents were to blame for nearly one-fourth of all fatalities linked to car accidents in the United States during 2019.

Drivers who avoid side-impact accidents risk driving into other vehicles or off the road and into a fixed object. In addition, side-impact collisions can be so forceful that they cause secondary crashes. For example, the struck vehicle can spin around and into oncoming traffic. The second impact often turns a minor accident into a serious or deadly one.

In today's high-tech world of red-light cameras, cell phones, and surveillance cameras, more and more of these accidents wind up captured on video. A skilled and experienced car accident attorney can help you obtain video and other evidence to prove that another motorist is responsible for your side-impact accident and injuries. Police reports, witness statements, and medical reports can help you build a case against a negligent driver. An attorney can also help with a wrongful death claim.

Driving Behaviors Linked to Side-Impact Car Accidents

Risky driving behaviors that can lead to side-impact car crashes include:

  • Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Drowsy driving
  • Running a red light and hitting a car that is traveling through an intersection
  • Driving while texting, eating, or otherwise distracted
  • Driving aggressively or recklessly, especially when changing lanes
  • Speeding
  • Failing to yield
  • Traveling too fast for snow, ice, and other dangerous road conditions
Common Injuries Suffered in Side-Impact Car Accidents

Side-impact car accident victims tend to suffer certain bodily injuries at a higher rate than accident victims hurt in other types of crashes. These injuries tend to be severe and often require hospitalization, multiple surgeries, and lengthy recovery times.

Today's cars and trucks have various safety features (airbags, seatbelts, and bumpers) that protect drivers and passengers in the case of a front or rear collision. However, side-impact car accidents typically leave occupants with little protection except for the car door. In other types of car accidents, the vehicle's trunk, bumpers, and hood serve as a buffer between the point of impact and the driver or passenger.

Even at a relatively slow speed such as 30 miles per hour, those in the struck vehicle can suffer serious injuries. The oncoming vehicle can crush the passenger or driver sitting on the other side of the point of impact and cause serious injuries such as broken bones and internal bleeding. People injured in these accidents tend to sustain injuries to the neck, head, chest, legs, and abdomen.

More specifically, these injuries include:

Internal bleeding: Due to the sheer force of these accidents, those involved often suffer internal bleeding and damage to internal organs. Liver lacerations are common.

Head and brain injuries: Accident victims often suffer fractured skulls, concussions, and traumatic brain injuries. One study found that side-impact crash survivors are three times more likely to sustain traumatic brain injuries when compared to those injured in other types of collisions.

Ear and eye injuries: Broken glass and airbags can cause permanent damage to the eyes and ears.

Back, neck, and spine injuries: Fractured discs and hernias are common, as is damage to the nerves along the spinal cord. In catastrophic crashes, survivors may suffer paralysis.

Whiplash: This type of injury occurs when a severe force causes a person's neck to whip back and forth. Whiplash can be painful and require extended medical care.

Depending on the type and severity of the injury, accident victims may be unable to work and may suffer long-term impairment and disability. People never fully recover from a severe side-impact car accident in many cases.

Motorcyclists are especially at risk when it comes to side-impact crashes. A motorcycle rider hit broadside by a car lacks the protections that safeguard car drivers and their passengers. As a result, injuries in these cases are often fatal.

Seniors are also at high risk of suffering severe injuries, especially if they have low bone density.

When a tractor-trailer, delivery truck, or other large vehicle broadsides or T-bones a car, serious injuries are likely to result.

If your family is dealing with a side-impact car accident, contact the Boston personal injury lawyers and wrongful death attorneys at Jeffrey Glassman Injury Lawyers today at (617) 777-7777 for a free consultation or complete our online form.

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