In 2016, there were 3,986 fatalities in large truck crashes, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Highway Loss Data Institute. Sixty-six percent of those killed were occupants in cars and other passenger vehicles.
This is because occupants in smaller passenger vehicles are much more vulnerable than motorists in trucks, due to the size and weight of commercial trucks. The force of a truck accident often leaves occupants with severe or fatal injuries in many cases.
The experienced New Haven truck accident lawyers of D’Amico & Pettinicchi aid accident victims in recovering maximum compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. If you have suffered any of the following common injuries from truck accidents, or others not listed here, contact us today for a free, no obligation consultation.
When a vehicle is hit by a commercial truck, occupants inside can be thrown throughout the vehicle, or can even be thrown out of the vehicle in some situations. This puts the body at risk of hitting various things inside the vehicle, such as the dash or windshield. Often the head takes the brunt of the impact.
Some common head injuries that are common in truck accidents include traumatic brain injuries and concussions.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
A traumatic brain injury, or TBI, occurs when the head receives a sudden, violent blow or jolt. TBIs need immediate medical treatment, and many times result in permanent medical conditions that are life-changing. TBIs range from mild to severe and can include side effects such as:
- Slurred speech
- Loss of consciousness ranging from 30 minutes to many hours
- Concentration problems
- Blurred vision
- Confusion causing anxiety or anger
- Memory loss
- Inability to form new memories
- Light and sound sensitivity
- Ongoing headaches
A concussion is a mild TBI that happens when the head sustains a blunt blow. Some common symptoms of a concussion include:
- Blurred vision
- Temporary loss of consciousness
Whiplash is a soft tissue injury to the neck. It happens when the head is thrust forward suddenly in an accident, and snaps to a stop suddenly. Whiplash causes symptoms that are mild to severe, including:
- Numbness and pain during neck movements
- Numbness in arms and upper body
- Pain in upper limbs
- Limited range of motion in the neck
Virtually any bone in the body can be broken in a truck accident. This typically occurs when you attempt to brace yourself against parts of the vehicle before a crash or if you are thrown about the vehicle during impact.
Fractures can cause impairment for months depending on their location. Common fractures from truck accidents often occur to bones in the:
Back injuries from truck accidents often cause long-term impairment. They may affect the spinal cord, discs or muscles throughout the back
- Spinal cord injuries – Damage to the spinal cord may lead to lost sensation, limited or lost motor function below the impacted area or temporary or permanent paralysis
- Herniated discs – The soft cushion material between vertebrae in the spine can be pushed outward during impact, causing it to bulge or herniate. This irritates the nerves surrounding the affected area, causing severe pain in many cases.
- Strains – If the muscles and tendons that support the spine are twisted, pulled or torn due to the force of an accident, a strain may occur. This can cause back pain and may lead to trouble sitting, walking or standing. Time is needed to heal these injuries and restore function.
Commercial trucks have larger fuel tanks than passenger vehicles and carry more fuel. In an accident, these tanks can be ruptured or explode, leading to fires fueled by the massive amount of gasoline.
Severe truck accident burns cause significant pain, scarring and mutilation, as well as blistering. Victims may not be able to escape the vehicle in a fire, which can result in death.
Seat Belt and Airbag Injuries
Safety equipment such as seat belts and airbags are vital to helping save lives in accidents. However, the force of an accident can often lead to injuries caused by these safety devices.
Seat belts help hold the body in place during an accident to help prevent the passenger from being thrown from the vehicle. However, when the body is thrown against the seat belt, it can injure the chest or abdomen. Common seat belt injuries include broken ribs, bruising, shoulder injuries, abrasions and lacerations.
Similarly, airbags deploy with great force – when this occurs, blunt trauma to the head, chest, neck or back may result. The speed at which an airbag deploys can also cause abrasions or burns to the skin.
Truck accidents can also lead to internal injuries. Organs within the body can be damaged or lacerated, causing internal bleeding. These injuries are often difficult to treat and may cause life-long limitations.
Internal injuries can affect the:
Get Help After a Truck Accident
If you or a loved one has suffered severe truck accident injuries, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
The seasoned injury attorneys of D’Amico & Pettinicchi will evaluate your claim and help you pursue the maximum compensation you deserve. Our legal services are provided on contingency, so you only pay if we recover compensation for your claim.
Schedule a free, no obligation consultation today to learn your legal options and protect your rights.