If you are the victim of a low-impact collision, you may think your car suffered most of the damage. It might be days before you realize you have sustained an injury since the symptoms may not show up right away.
Low-impact crashes can cause significant soft tissue injuries that are not visible to the naked eye. Since the insurance company you plan to approach for compensation wants to protect its policyholder — the driver who rear-ended you — an agent may try to deny your claim, inferring that you are faking your injury.
How soft tissue injuries can happen
Many low-impact crashes occur at speeds of 2.5 to 5 miles per hour. Most of these are rear-end collisions. As the victim of the collision, your head snaps forward and backward and your body absorbs the impact, especially your neck and back. While you might walk away from the crash, you may feel the effects later. For example, you might feel dizzy or nauseous, have a headache or feel disoriented. If you hit your head on the steering wheel, you could have a concussion or more serious brain damage. Because the seatbelt pulls tight across your body upon impact, you could sustain injuries to your internal organs.
What to do after the crash
Once you have exchanged information and fulfilled any other duties at the collision scene, your next move should be to seek medical treatment. The sooner you see a doctor, the sooner he or she can check you out and prepare a timely medical report that links any injury you might have to the accident. The medical report will be especially important when you file your insurance company claim.
Tackling the insurance company
When the time comes for you to seek compensation for your soft tissue injury, a personal injury attorney can help you take on a big insurance company. Soft tissue injuries caused by low-impact crashes may be invisible, but they are a reality, and an insurance company should acknowledge the extent of the damage their policyholder caused to you, the victim of the low-impact collision.