In 2020, a total of 38,824 people died out of 35,766 crashes that involved 54,272 motor vehicles. It’s an unfortunate truth, but every time you’re out on the road, there’s a possibility you might get in an accident, even if you’re the safest driver around.
Practicing defensive driving is a great way to protect yourself. And one way to do defensive driving is to know about and be prepared for the types of car accidents that occur.
In this article, we’ll discuss the most common types of car accidents and what to do if you’re in one.
The Types of Car Accidents
Keep in mind that the following are the most common car accident types you’ll come across. It’s very possible that you may be involved in a type not listed below.
When you think of car accidents, you usually envision several vehicles involved. But it’s actually quite common to see single-car accidents.
These might happen when the driver swerves to avoid hitting something. Or the weather might make driving conditions unfavorable, which can cause a single-car accident.
Do note that the driver isn’t always at fault.
Multi-car accidents are also known as pileups. These can occur when a chain reaction happens after 2 cars have collided. As you might expect, those far away from the initial crash may unexpectedly end up as part of this chain reaction.
It can be difficult to determine who’s at fault, as it’s possible that more than one driver is partially at fault. Insurance companies often try to shift the blame to avoid their driver facing huge consequences, so claims are tricky. They can also become long and drawn out.
Rear-end collisions are very common and thankfully, most are minor. A vehicle may hit another from behind because they haven’t reacted fast enough. Minor rear-end accidents happen in stop-and-go traffic (such as on the freeway during rush hour) where the driver at fault isn’t paying attention to the road.
The force of impact is the second car’s speed minus the first one’s. While this can mitigate some damage, victims can still suffer from things like neck injuries and broken bones.
Head-on collisions are one of the deadliest types of car crashes since the force of impact is the total of both vehicles’ speeds. Victims often have serious injuries and the cars are usually totaled. Some injuries you might face include traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), spinal cord injuries, internal organ damage, and broken bones.
While head-on collisions are worrying, the positive side is they’re relatively rare compared to the other car accident types on this list.
T-bone crashes are also known as side-impact or broadside collisions. They rank pretty high in terms of danger because the car at fault is usually going fast, and the occupants on the side they strike are especially at risk. They may suffer from broken bones or concussions.
These accidents usually happen at intersections when drivers fail to yield or observe traffic signals and signs. So it shouldn’t be surprising that these crashes occur frequently.
Rollover accidents happen when a vehicle’s flipped over. Depending on the circumstances, the car can flip multiple times and even land on its roof, which can eject the passengers in the process.
Serious injuries and even death can result, so it’s vital that you always fasten your seatbelt.
What to Do After a Car Accident
No matter what type of car crash you’re in, the first thing you need to do is check whether everyone’s ok. If someone is seriously injured, dial 911 right away.
Next, you should pull over to the side if the vehicles are still operable. No matter where the cars are parked, you should turn on the hazard lights so they won’t be hit by oncoming traffic. If you haven’t already, call 911 so you can have a police officer come out to make a report.
Take Pictures and Videos
Gather all the evidence you can by taking pictures and videos of the vehicles, roads, and people’s injuries. This can help you build a case should you need to file a claim.
You should exchange information with all parties involved, including witnesses. You should get their:
- Full names
- Phone numbers
- License plate numbers
- Driver’s license numbers
- Insurance information
When the police arrive, you should also get their badge numbers and report number.
It’s important that you don’t discuss who’s at fault, much less admit it’s yours, even if it is.
Notify Your Insurance Company
You need to let your insurance company know that you’ve been involved in a car crash. They’ll then give you instructions on how to process a claim and what to expect from it.
If your vehicle needs to be towed, your insurer can also arrange for that.
Speak to a Car Accident Lawyer
Consulting a car accident lawyer can be a good move. It can be a distressing time already, so you shouldn’t have to deal with legal matters.
These legal professionals will be your advocate and make sure that no one takes advantage of you.
Get Fair Compensation if You’re in a Car Accident
Now you know about the common types of car accidents and what to do if you’re in one.
If your car’s been damaged and/or you’ve suffered injuries, then it’s important to speak with a car accident lawyer. Not only can the other parties be difficult to deal with, but your own insurance company may lowball you. Having a lawyer on your side ensures that you get the fair compensation you deserve.
If you’ve been in a car accident recently, then contact us today for a free personal injury lawsuit case evaluation. Our trial law firm has a proven record of success.