As a Quincy, Massachusetts car accident lawyer, I see too many injuries resulting from car accidents. By “car accidents,” I mean all kinds of motor vehicle accidents, including SUV’s and vans. Some are Massachusetts pedestrian-car accidents, some are bicycle-car accidents, and some are car-truck accidents. But regardless of the type, these accidents can be devastating to the injured party, and leave them forever harmed, never quite feeling or being 100% again.
Despite this, it’s my experience that an inordinate number of people think that most car accidents are a scam – an overblown matter that’s just used to score an injury settlement. Let me assure those people: When over ton of steel and glass slam into you, whether you’re a driver or a pedestrian, you are going to be hurt — the only question is how much you’re hurt, not if. And if anyone doubts that, that person needs to either take a class in physics, or talk to someone who has been injured in such an accident. A great deal of these injuries are known medically as “soft tissue injuries,” meaning they don’t consist of broken bones or lacerated tissue. Because they’re soft tissue injuries, they really can’t be viewed on an x-ray or similar imaging studies. Many of these injuries can remain “invisible,” yet cause long-term or even permanent disability.
One accident that’s often poked fun of by skeptics of motor vehicle accident injuries, is the proverbial “whiplash.” However, the fact is that whiplash can lead to very serious, debilitating injuries that can make it impossible for the injured party to function, or to go to work – sometimes permanently. While many people don’t know this, the word “whiplash” is not even a medical term. It describes what is more accurately known as a “cervical acceleration-deceleration” injury, which is medical term that describes a sudden, rapid back-and-forth movement of the neck. There is nothing new about this type of injury – it wasn’t “made up” after the automobile was created, as a means to “cash in” on “bogus car accident claims.” This injury has been around since humankind rode on anything that moved – horses, wagons, trains, cars. It happens because in many vehicle collisions, the driver doesn’t have enough time to react quickly enough to avoid the crash. The violent back-and-forth snapping action of the neck, can produce back, neck, and shoulder injuries that can result in headaches, pain in the arms and legs, and numbness – and far from being “minor,” they can last for years, or even become permanent.
So to those who think that a lot of motor vehicle accident claims are “bogus”: Please, hold your tongue until you’ve been there. Then you can talk all you want.
Or, we could always handle the argument over automobile tort reform this way: Your car accident injury will be the next one we block from the courthouse. Fair enough?