Common Varieties of Motor Vehicle Accidents

Let’s talk a little about some types of motor vehicle accidents, our offices handles frequently. There’s a pretty good chance you’ve been involved in one of them.

Rear Ender

Rear End Accidents are almost always caused by an inattentive or distracted driver who is not paying attention to the road.

It’s always amazing to me that so much time can elapse between the time the front car stops and the time the rear car plows into it. Often, the driver in the rear is fatigued, using a cell phone or eating a Whopper while driving.

Most of these accidents are clear in terms of liability though occasionally we see an at fault driver stating the car in front “suddenly stopped”.

Certainly cameras catching the accident live are more frequent than ever, but often witnesses can be sought out who have seen the collision.

In most cases, the insurance for the at-fault driver will admit responsibility, but then try to weasel out of paying by stating the accident could not have “caused” the injury to the extent the injured party claims.

In the good old days, people would own up to responsibility but with insurance companies, it’s always a fight.


Low Impact Collision

In California, insurance companies refer to accidents with less than $2000 or so in car damage as MIST CASES or Minor Impact Soft Tissue cases.  The insurance companies, despite overwhelming medical evidence that an individual can be hurt at speeds of less than 3 mph, will fight these cases tooth and nail. They often hire defense “hired gun” doctors who try to confuse the jury and state someone could not have been injured in such a crash. Experienced car accident attorney’s in cases like this where serious injuries occur (and they occasionally do) may need to hire a biomechanic to testify and animate exactly how such an injury may occur.  Every low impact collision case is difficult and an experienced car accident lawyer can tell you how best to proceed.

Frontal or Head-On Crashes

Often, front end or head-on crashes cause the most serious injuries to the body. Occasionally, people have time to brace and bracing may give the body some time to prepare for impact. Sometimes, a braced body can help absorb the shock. More often, however, as in this video, there just isn’t time to react.

Front end impacts can occur with other vehicles or with deer, animals, trees or various obstructions in the road.

Front end impacts can result in very serious injuries including brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, fractured ribs and cardiac contusions if the air bags go off, lung damage or frequently death. Front end impacts at 40 mph or over almost always result in catastrophic injuries.

Intersection or T-Bone Accidents

Intersection Accidents can also be catastrophic as seen above. They are often caused because someone tries to beat a Yellow light or fails to stop at a stop sign. They can also be caused or contributed to because the Intersection is poorly designed and the County or Cal Trans may be partially of fully at fault. I have written extensively on Intersection accidents and the most Dangerous Intersections in Sacramento County and Surrounding areas can be found here. Intersection accidents often have

cameras near by and the film can be obtained if one acts quickly.


Side Impact Collisions 

The above video shows what is so very dangerous about a side impact. Typically, if the impact the driver or passenger’s head is thrown to the side and may break the glass on the windshield. Very few cars have side airbags that might otherwise deploy mitigating the injury to the occupants. Because the head often strikes the side window or door, injuries in these accidents are typically severe with concussion, brain injury and upper extremity fractures common.

Call me, Ed Smith, for free, friendly advice. 916.921.6400.

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