While automobile accidents are always stressful and overwhelming events, accidents involving larger vehicles, like commercial trucks, can be devastating. There are a number of factors that contribute to the types of injuries accident victims sustain. In order to understand why some injuries are more common than others when it comes to tractor-trailer crashes, let’s start by going over why the likelihood of being injured is higher.
Why Do Big Rig Wrecks Result in More Injuries?
While any traffic accident can result in injuries or even fatalities, crashes involving tractor-trailers and large trucks are typically more severe. There are a number of reasons for this. Knowing why truck accidents are more dangerous will help you understand the common injuries they cause.
For one, trucks weigh more. A large truck generally weighs several tons more than a small passenger vehicle, if not more. The weight differences mean that the smaller vehicle is likely to sustain more damage than the larger semi. Additionally, trucks also move more air. When a truck creates serious turbulence, the airflow can knock other drivers off their paths.
Trucks also make wide turns, experience more tire blowouts, and take longer to stop. Because of this, multiple cars could be involved in an accident. Because the trucker is protected in their cab, they may sustain only minor injuries. The occupants in the smaller cars and vehicles are more likely to sustain serious or even catastrophic injuries.
Common Types of Tractor-Trailer Accident Injuries
While there are a number of factors that affect the types of injuries a truck accident victim will sustain, there are certain injuries that are more common.
- Broken Bones. Depending on the force of the accidents, the driver or passengers in the car could sustain broken bones. While some fractures can be set and will heal with a cast over time, other breaks may be so severe surgery is required. When surgery is necessary, the recovery time is often extended and physical therapy may be needed.
- Neck and Back Injuries. The blunt trauma a body experiences in a crash with a tractor-trailer can be severe. At the moment of impact, the occupants in the car may be jolted or forced in multiple directions. The structural systems that make up the neck and back are intricate and delicate. When injuries occur, the pain can be debilitating. Whiplash and herniated disks are among the most common neck and back injuries.
- Head and Brain Injuries. Truck accidents can cause severe injuries to the head or brain. The most common injuries include lacerations and concussions. These injuries may be mild, moderate, or severe. Head and brain injuries often result in hospitalization.
- Burns. Many commercial trucks haul hazardous or flammable chemicals. When those chemicals are involved in a crash, there’s an increased risk of a fire breaking out. Burn injuries can be difficult to recover from, depending on the degree.
- Internal Injuries. The sheer trauma combined with the physical stressed the body goes through when coming in contact with an airbag or other safety equipment can cause abdominal trauma. Common internal injuries involve the liver, spleen, kidneys, bladder, or pancreas.
The recovery process for the injuries discussed above varies depending on the severity of the condition and the health status of the victim prior to the accident. The younger and healthier a person is, the higher chance they have at making a recovery.
Commercial Truck Accidents and Catastrophic Injuries
When someone sustains a catastrophic injury, their life is completely upended. Often times, they’ll be unable to return to their previous job and they may require medical equipment or care for the rest of their life. Truck accidents, especially override and underride wrecks, can result in this type of injury.
The most common catastrophic commercial truck accident injuries include traumatic brain injuries that result in cognitive impairments, spinal cord injuries that cause paralysis, amputations, and severe burns that cause disfigurement. When a semi crash victim sustains a catastrophic injury, they’ll need a serious and a reputable lawyer to guide them through seeking the compensation they need to find a new normal.
Recovering from Truck Crash Injuries
Immediately following a wreck with a commercial truck, it’s imperative to seek medical attention. It’s likely emergency responders will arrive on scene. The best thing you can do for yourself, your family, and your future is to consent to a medical examination. You’ll be looked over to determine how you were injured and what steps need to be taken to get you on the road to recovery.
Once emergent issues have passed, you can start working on seeking the compensation you’re owed for an accident that wasn’t your fault. To learn more about how a lawyer can help you handle insurance companies and legal paperwork, schedule a free consultation with the Law Office of Mike Campbell today.