Any vehicle collision can turn catastrophic in an instant; however, studies have shown that some types of accidents have the potential to be more deadly than others. Single-vehicle accidents accounted for more than half of all deadly crashes in 2020. Pedestrian accidents, head-on collisions, T-Bone accidents, rollover crashes, and off-road accidents are also among the most dangerous types of car collisions. In general, the higher the speed of the cars involved, the greater the injuries will be. Other factors that make car accidents more dangerous include the size of the vehicles involved in the crash and whether alcohol or drugs are involved. Being more aware of your overall driving habits and the dangers of the road could possibly save your life. To help keep you informed and safe, we explore the most dangerous type of car crash and what to do if you are in a car accident.
The Baltimore car accident lawyers at The Snyder Law Group understand the devastation and tragedy that an accident can cause. Family members may be killed or forever changed in an instant, thrusting everyone into an unfamiliar new normal without answers. Our team helps mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, and others recover compensation and pursue justice when they suffer an injury or lose a loved one because of someone else’s conduct. We provide unparalleled dedication to our clients and leave no stone unturned when fighting for them.
What Is the Most Dangerous Type of Car Crash?
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) most recent data, single-vehicle accidents accounted for 58% of all traffic fatalities in the United States. These accidents may occur because people are speeding and lose control of their vehicles. Or they occur when an object or animal enters the roadway, causing the driver to swerve and hit a person or object.
The NHTSA reports that 20,753 fatal single-car accidents occurred in 2020, whereas there were 15,013 fatal crashes involving multiple vehicles. Of the total number of fatal single-car accidents, 10,468 occurred on the roadside (this excludes the shoulder of the road), and 7,556 occurred on the roadway.
What Are the Most Dangerous Types of Collisions?
Anytime you are driving a motor vehicle or are walking or riding a bicycle near a roadway, the potential for an accident is present. All collisions have the potential to cause extensive injuries, property damage, and even death. But there are some types of collisions that tend to be more dangerous than others. Those include pedestrian accidents, head-on collisions, rollover crashes, T-Bone accidents, and off-road collisions.
Pedestrian accidents often result in broken bones, spinal cord injuries, brain damage, or even death. In 2020, pedestrian accidents accounted for 1.1% of all accidents in the United States but 16.7% of all car-related deaths. Those injured in these types of collisions may call on the help of catastrophic injury lawyers to help them recover the compensation they need to cover their medical bills, lost wages, and other damages.
One of the most dangerous types of car accidents is a head-on collision. Because these crashes involve the full force of both vehicles colliding head-on, they have the potential to cause significant damage and even death. The vehicles may collide because one driver was texting and swerved into an oncoming lane of traffic or a driver was intoxicated and unable to keep the car in the correct lane. While head-on accidents are not the most common, accounting for only 2% of car accidents in 2020, they are one of the most dangerous kinds of accidents.
T-bone accidents happen when one car runs into the side of another vehicle. The severity of the accident depends on the speed and size of the vehicles and the location of the impact. Injuries most associated with this vehicle accident are often whiplash and concussion. More severe injuries include spinal cord injury and broken bones or damage to organs like lungs, kidneys, intestines, and spleen. In some cases, a T-Bone accident can cause the other car to roll over, further compounding the injuries or even killing those in the vehicle.
Many consider this type of car accident to be one of the most fatal. They commonly involve a singular car veering off the road and crashing into objects such as poles, concrete barriers, or trees. These incidents often occur due to vehicle over-corrections, weather or road conditions, distracted or drowsy driving, and driving under the influence. The NHTSA report reveals that 1,030,048 off-road crashes occurred in the United States in 2020, resulting in 13,727 deaths and 337,221 injuries.
Unlike other car accidents, rollover crashes typically involve one vehicle that loses traction or balance and topples over. For example, a car may flip over if the driver is driving too fast for the conditions and loses stability around tight corners. Depending on the speed, the automobile may roll over more than once. Rollover accidents can result in major spinal, brain, and head injuries. In 2020, there were 2,694 fatal rollover accidents in the United States, according to the most recent NHTSA report.
What Should I Do If I Am In a Car Accident?
If you are in a car accident, there are steps you can take to help protect your health and legal rights. Beneficial steps to follow include:
- Seeking medical attention,
- Reporting the accident to the authorities,
- Filing a car accident claim with the insurance company,
- Contacting a car crash lawyer, and
- Filing a lawsuit.
If you need help with any stage of this process, consider contacting an attorney in your state. Personal injury lawyers have extensive experience helping victims and their loved ones to understand what to expect during the process. They can also help complete these steps on your behalf, freeing up your time to focus on healing.
Seek Medical Attention
The first step after being in a dangerous car accident is to see a doctor. Many injuries do not fully appear until hours or even days after the accident. This is especially true for more subtle but serious injuries, such as concussions, nerve damage, or internal harm. Seeing a doctor also helps you to establish a connection between the car accident and your resulting injuries. You can use this evidence to try to prove the other driver is liable and should pay you compensation.
Report the Accident
Next, report the accident to the local police department. Most states require you to report the collision to the police shortly after it occurs if people are injured or killed, or there is damage to property. The best practice is to notify the police so they can create a report, even if you do not think it is a requirement in your state. If you do not report the accident to the police and the insurance company tries to argue that you should have, you may run into complications. An attorney can help you understand and meet your reporting obligations.
File an Insurance Claim
The next step is to file an insurance claim with the carrier that covers the car you were in when the accident occurred. If you were in a pedestrian accident, gather the insurance information from those involved in the crash. An attorney can help you complete the appropriate steps and file a claim with the appropriate party.
When communicating with the insurance company after the car accident, try to only convey the facts they need to know to understand the cause of the accident. Limit or, if possible, eliminate commentary such as, “I couldn’t see very well because I was looking at the radio,” or statements to that effect. The insurance company may use these comments to try to undermine your claim and argue that you are at fault. This may create an uphill battle for you or your attorney.
Contact a Car Accident Attorney
Contacting a car accident lawyer is also beneficial to help you identify and preserve your legal rights. Many insurance companies try to persuade injury victims to accept low, quick-fix settlement offers to avoid paying out the true value of the claim. This is especially true if the injuries are severe. Before signing any settlement offer, it is wise to consult a lawyer and ask them to review the evidence and the proposal. They can advise you on what a fair offer might look like and can negotiate the settlement on your behalf.
File a Lawsuit
If you and the at-fault party are unable to come to a settlement agreement, you may need to file a lawsuit to pursue the compensation you need to recover. Each state requires injured parties to bring a lawsuit within the applicable deadline or statute of limitations. For example, the statute of limitations for car accident cases in Maryland is typically three years from the date of the crash. In some cases, the law may require you to file the case sooner than this, or it can give you extra time. A car accident lawyer can help you identify the deadline for your situation and file the necessary legal paperwork.
Can I File a Lawsuit if My Loved One Died in a Car Crash?
If your loved one died in a car crash, you might be eligible to file a wrongful death case. Whether this is possible depends on the applicable law and your relationship with your loved one. For example, Maryland law allows the husband, wife, parent, or child of the person killed in the accident to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Others may also be able to file a claim in certain situations. If your loved one was killed in a car accident, a personal injury attorney could help you understand your legal rights and bring a lawsuit against the party responsible for your loved one’s death.
Contact The Snyder Law Group Today
The Snyder Law Group, LLC, proudly represents clients throughout Maryland and Washington, D.C. Our experienced Baltimore attorneys understand the frustration of working with an insurance company, medical professional, or another party that refuses to accept liability for negligent or reckless behavior. You can take heart in knowing our talented and experienced lawyers are ready to work for you. We are experienced in handling personal injury claims of medical malpractice or injury resulting from serious car and truck accidents and have secured hundreds of millions in verdicts and settlements. Please visit our website, www.410thefirm.com, or call us at 410-604-8467 for more information. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.