Although the majority of rear-end collisions are usually just minor annoyances for the parties involved, there is quite a few that result in serious injury from the impact of one vehicle slamming into the back of the other. That quick and sharp jerking motion of a vehicle’s occupant’s neck often causes a whiplash injury because of the way the muscles, tendons, and bones are twisted and stressed.
If you have been involved in a rear-end crash and have suffered a whiplash injury, first seek medical help and then contact a Virginia car accident attorney from Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp to find out how we can help.
What are the symptoms of whiplash?
In some rear-end crashes, the symptoms of a whiplash injury are immediate and intense. But this isn’t always the case. It is not uncommon for the victim to not feel or exhibit any symptoms of the injury at the accident site and usually decline any kind of medical treatment by emergency responders. It isn’t until hours – or even days – later that the victim begins to suffer the symptoms of the injury. Some of the common signs that you may have sustained a whiplash injury include:
- Arm pain
- Blurred vision
- Jaw pain
- Lack of back or neck mobility
- Neck pain
- Numbness or tingling in the arms
- Ringing in the ears
- Shoulder pain
The severity of the injury depends on certain factors, including the type and severity of the crash impact, the age of the victim, and whether the victim had any past medical history of back or neck injuries.
Who is liable for a whiplash injury?
When there has been a rear-end collision, the presumption of law is that the driver who rear-ended the other vehicle is the at-fault party in the majority of cases. This is because the most common cause of these types of crashes is that the second driver is following too closely behind the other vehicle (tailgating), not allowing enough space between vehicles in the event the first vehicle has to come to a sudden stop.
There are many reasons why the second driver may be guilty of tailgating. They may have been in a hurry and driving too closely in an effort to get the first driver to speed it up (aggressive driving), or they could have been distracted (looking at their phone, etc.) and didn’t realize they were so close to the first vehicle, or they may have been under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs, causing their reaction time to be delayed and did not stop in time.
Since the second driver was tailgating, which violates Virginia traffic laws, they are considered at fault for the crash and are legally responsible for all of the injuries and vehicle damage the other driver sustained. This can include medical expenses, loss of income, pain and suffering, and emotional anguish. If the injury is severe enough and leaves the victim with a permanent disability, they may be unable to go back to the profession they had before the crash and the at-fault driver could then be liable for loss of future income.
Contact a Virginia Injury Attorney for Details
If you or a loved one has suffered a rear-end crash injury as a result of another party’s negligent or reckless actions, contact a Virginia car accident attorney from Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp. It is critical to remember that Virginia has placed a statute of limitation for how long victims have to file a claim for damages against those responsible for their injuries, so do not delay. Failure to file before that legal deadline could mean you lose any chance of ever filing your claim or getting justice against the person responsible for you or your loved one’s injuries.
Call our office today to set up a free and confidential case evaluation with one of our dedicated accident attorneys.