Side Impact Accidents Attorney in Houston
“T-bone” or “broadside” car wrecks are generally known as side-impact car crashes. They’re some of the most dangerous types of collisions out there, as they happen when one vehicle crashes into the side of another, hitting them at a 90º angle that often takes the shape of the letter “T.”
Unfortunately, those sitting on the impact side of the vehicle stand a higher risk of suffering more serious injuries than those involved in front-end or rear-end collisions.
The side of a vehicle offers less protection than the front or back, leaving a passengers vulnerable to absorbing the devastating impact. Older car models may not even have the side-collision safety features (like airbags or reinforced doors) we see in newer vehicles.
These crashes often happen with little warning, making it even harder to protect yourself. And according to this 2020 report by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), the number of deaths caused by broadside crashes has increased by 20% over the past 20 years.
The same report claimed that side-impact collisions made up 23% of passenger vehicle occupant deaths; the highest next to head-on collisions or frontal impacts. This rise is due to factors like relaxed speed limits and a greater number of heavier SUVs on the roads.
What are the causes of side impact accidents?
Even if you are travelling as slow as 10 miles per hour — a side impact accident can prove fatal. That said, certain driving scenarios make you more likely to get into a side-impact crash. Here are a few examples:
- Running a Red Light: If you’re rushing to get through a yellow light and it turns red, you could end up hitting the side of another vehicle.
- Left-Hand Turns: If you’re not careful when making a left turn to merge into traffic, you could end up in a side-impact crash with an oncoming vehicle. And remember, it’s not always your fault! If the other driver is speeding, you’re more likely to get into a wreck, and that other driver would be held to be partly at fault, thus making him partly liable.
- Uncontrolled Intersections: If you don’t slow down or stop at an uncontrolled intersection, you could end up hitting the side of another vehicle.
- Failure to Yield: This can happen in a variety of situations, like making a right turn at a red light or a stop sign without checking oncoming traffic.
And remember, other dangerous driving activities, like driving under the influence, texting while driving, or distracted driving, can also contribute to side-impact crashes. So always be careful on the road because those involved in side-impact wrecks often sustain serious injuries.
Possible Injuries arising from a side impact accident
Side-impact collisions can leave you with some pretty devastating injuries. Studies have shown that the likelihood of serious or fatal injuries to passengers and drivers in side-impact motor vehicle crashes varies based on seating position and seat belt usage. The reports indicate that:
- Passengers seated on the same side as the crash in the rear of the vehicle are more susceptible to serious or fatal injuries compared to those seated on the opposite side.
- Passengers in the rear seats are three times more likely to be wearing seat belts if the driver was using a seat belt.
- Unbelted passengers are found to be nearly six times as likely to sustain severe or fatal injuries compared to those who were wearing seat belts.
But due to factors like the weight of the vehicle, and the speed or force of impact, injuries may vary. From concussions to broken bones, here are the most common injuries reported in U.S. insurance claims:
- Concussions and TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury): These occur when the head is severely shaken or a direct hit to the skull. If your head strikes a part of the collapsing vehicle in a T-bone crash, you may be dealing with a more serious brain injury that can hamper your thinking capacity and emotional stability.These can range from mild to severe. Mild TBIs make up about 75% of annually reported TBIs, with severe TBIs leading to deep-running neurological and cognitive damage. A mild TBI can have a drastic impact on your life or your health
- Thoracic trauma (Chest trauma): A lot of upper-body injuries from side-impact accidents occur in the chest and can impact your heart, lungs, and the flow of air and blood. In severe cases, these injuries can be life-threatening and require immediate medical attention.
- Abdominal injuries: A T-bone crash can also result in liver, kidney, and spleen damage, as well as piercing injuries to the lower gastrointestinal organs from vehicle debris.
- Broken Bones: The force of a side-impact collision can shatter even the toughest bones, including your arms, hips, and legs. The connective tissue and muscles in your hips and knees are also susceptible to debilitating injury. The connective tissue can be stretched in ways it normally does not move.
Even with today’s advanced safety features like side-impact airbags and reinforced safety cages, passengers can still suffer serious injury in a side-impact collision. Whiplash injuries, being tossed around the vehicle like a rag doll, and even being thrown off from the car (on rare occasions, even while belted) are all possible consequences. And young children are especially vulnerable.
Contact An Experienced Houston Side Impact Lawyer
If you are involved in a side impact crash, first you must focus on your medical care.
The strength of your claim will rest on the factual situation and the evidence. Try to get as much evidence on the scene as you can! And that includes names of the at-fault drivers, their vehicle particulars, witnesses, and the opinions of other passengers in the vehicle. Always request a police report.
This is where an experienced side impact attorney comes in, helping you appreciate the compensation you deserve for your injuries. We will use our experience and experts to reverse-engineer the accident, identifying major touchpoints and understanding the evidence proving liability in the lead-up to the accident.
Leaving nothing to chance, the attorneys at Fitts Law firm utilize their court-room skills and advocacy to maximize your recovery. Their research teams will search high and low to locate insurance policies that cover you or other responsible parties. Then they will obtain your medical records to pursue your recovery, and submit and file all necessary claims with the appropriate court and analyze your case for settlement.
Bringing a side impact claim pits you against insurance companies — a billion-dollar industry that couldn’t care less about justice; but their pockets. Luckily, they only hold the aces if you let them. They have a team of experts and so should you,
Your claim might likely not go to trial, but they’ll only take you seriously when they know you’ve got a a team on your side that can analyze the law and damages to establish the the real value of your claim ( If you do not have this, they will offer you a lowball offer) to get the best possible offer in your circumstances.
Got a settlement offer already? Let the Fitts Law Firm review it with a professional pair of eyes before you sign the dotted lines.
Our Houston personal injury attorneys have handled hundreds of side-impact accident claims and have gotten compensation for what it’s worth. That way, you have enough to cover medical and other unforeseen expenses.
Get in touch with us to speak with an experienced Houston side impact accident lawyer!
Call Today 1-800-99-FITTS.