It may sound like a less serious accident, but a sideswipe can cause significant injury to the passengers involved. The cars involved in the accident may sustain only minor cosmetic damage, and in some cases, insurers rush to pay property claims but refuse to recognize the very real injuries caused by these types of accidents.
A sideswipe occurs when two cars traveling in the same direction collide; usually, the driver’s side of one car collides with the passenger side of another. Since most cars are designed to protect passengers from head on and rear end collision, passengers have far less protection on the sides. Head, neck and back injuries can happen in an instant and may not me immediately apparent after a sideswipe accident.
Common Causes of Sideswipe Accidents
Distracted driving, drunk driving and even road rage may be to blame for a side swipe accident. In most cases, the driver swerves out of their own lane and into an adjacent on, causing a collision. According to research from the National Highway Safety and Transportation Board, the majority of sideswipes are caused by inattention, distraction and blind spots, particularly when trucks or large vehicles are involved.
What to do if you’ve been Sideswiped
If you have been involved in a sideswipe accident, you can make sure that you get the compensation you need for your injuries and property damage by fully documenting the accident when it occurs. Taking pictures or video of the scene, getting contact information for any witnesses and filing a police report can help you if you have to file a lawsuit.
Never accept a settlement from an insurance company without checking with an auto accident attorney first. The other driver’s insurance company who is in a hurry to pay for the damage to your car could be rushing you through the process and omitting payment for your injuries, lost work time and medical care.
Contact an attorney familiar with sideswipe accidents to discuss your case and learn more about your options if you have been injured. If you have been injured in a sideswipe accident, contact us; we’re here to help you recover from the incident and make sure you are treated fairly.