Trucking accidents that involve passenger vehicles are more often than not catastrophic. Weighing up to 80,000 pounds (or more with oversized load permits), the average commercial truck can outweigh a passenger vehicle by 20 to 30 times. The weight disparity between a truck and a passenger car can lead to the latter absorbing most of the impact in a collision. Usually, the passenger car will sustain the most damage. The unique nature of commercial truck accidents can cause severe, catastrophic and fatal personal injuries to victims.
Even a minor truck accident could cause injuries to the muscles in the neck, such as whiplash. More serious truck accidents could cause severe neck and back injuries, including herniated or ruptured disks, slipped disks, dislocations and spinal cord injuries. Injuries to the sensitive spinal cord, such as nerve damage or a severed spine, could cause permanent disability such as paralysis. If you were injured in a trucking accident and believe you sustained injuries to your spine, our spinal cord injury lawyers in Denver can help. Minor neck and back injuries could still lead to issues such as chronic pain, muscle spasms and temporary disabilities.
The gravitational forces involved in a truck accident could fling the occupants of a passenger vehicle back, forward or sideways in a collision. Bodily impacts with elements inside the vehicle, such as the windshield or steering column, could be intense enough to cause bone fractures. If the crash ejects a passenger, an impact with the roadway could also cause broken bones. Any bone in the body, including the skull and spine, could suffer a fracture in a trucking accident.
Injuries to the muscles or tendons could be painful and seriously debilitating. A pulled, strained or sprained muscle in a truck accident could cause temporary or even permanent disability for the victim. Other soft tissue injuries, such as hematoma, bruising or contusion could also cause significant pain and suffering. Swelling, pain and loss of body part function often stem from soft tissue injuries in a truck crash.
Injuries to the head and brain are somewhat common in truck accidents – especially if the trailer of the big rig crashes through the top of the passenger vehicle. The crash could cause an open head injury, in which an impact cracks or punctures the skull and affects the brain. It could also cause a closed head injury, which does not involve a skull fracture but could still impact the brain.
A traumatic brain injury could cause permanent physical and/or cognitive disabilities. They can happen if the head strikes something in the collision or if the head and neck whip around too rapidly, damaging the brain stem. A brain injury may or may not cause loss of consciousness and could have delayed symptoms. Each brain injury is unique.
Broken glass or jagged metal in a truck accident could cut the skin and cause significant bleeding, severed arteries and permanent scars. Severe lacerations may require emergency care and treatments such as stitches. A laceration in the wrong place could lead to serious blood loss and risk of complications such as cardiac arrest. Lacerations often cause lifelong scarring or disfigurement. A victim’s body could also suffer scrapes and road rash if it comes in contact with the road.
Many different injuries could be fatal in a serious truck accident. In 2017, 4,657 fatal traffic accidents involved large trucks in the U.S. Brain trauma, damage to the internal organs, internal bleeding or a severed spine could all lead to wrongful death. In these cases, family members of the deceased could potentially bring civil lawsuits against the at-fault truck drivers or trucking companies in pursuit of damages. Wrongful death damages could pay for funeral costs, burial expenses, medical bills, lost income, lost inheritance, mental anguish and many other damages.
If you or a loved one suffered serious injuries from a truck accident, consult with an experienced Denver truck accident attorney from The Fang Law Firm. We can help.