Internal Injuries in Tennessee Car Accidents
If you are in a serious car accident on a Tennessee highway, you may have suffered serious, internal injuries and not immediately be aware of them. Internal injuries of vital organs are extremely dangerous and can be fatal in the worst cases.
These types of serious accidents happen often across the United States. In Tennessee in 2016, there were 884 fatal car accidents and 958 deaths, with thousands more seriously injured.
Injuries to vital organs in a car accidents can result in severe complications, sometimes resulting in organ failure. Some examples include:
- Bruised, pierced or collapsed lung
- Heart contusion/failure
- Kidney damage
- Ruptures of the abdomen
- Spleen damage
- Liver damage
- TBI (traumatic brain injury).
These car accident injuries can cause respiratory failure, internal bleeding and sometimes death. However, injuries sometimes are not immediately apparent right after the accident. Be sure to receive medical attention immediately after a serious motor vehicle crash. A medical professional will document your injuries right after the incident.This is critical to ensure that a defense attorney, weeks or months later, cannot argue that your injuries were a pre-existing condition.
What Are Symptoms of Internal Injuries?
Right after an accident, you may be in shock and not in your best mental state. It is possible to overlook ominous signs of internal organ damage. Some symptoms to look for are:
- Abdomen or other part of the body swells
- Deep bruising and discolored skin
- A feeling of tightness in the chest or other injured body part
- Feeling lightheaded or faint
- Nausea and vomiting
- Debilitating headaches, which can be a sign of concussion or worse
- Blurred vision – also a possible sign of concussion.
How Internal Injuries Happen
Car accidents often cause internal injuries because of the violent forces involved in a collision. It is important to note that motor vehicles have a high level of force and momentum even at fairly slow speeds, and serious injuries can occur even when the air bag deploys. Internal damage also can occur in any accident where there is blunt force trauma to your body. Examples of accidents where serious organ damage can occur are:
- Driver’s chest slams into the steering wheel in a high speed accident
- Retracting seat belt causes internal bleeding and/or broken ribs
- A pedestrian or cyclist is struck by a motor vehicle
- A construction worker falls out of a window or from scaffolding
- Worker is hit by an object
- Worker is crushed between two large objects.
Legal Options for Internal Injuries
If your accident injuries are due to the negligence of another party, you may take legal action to obtain compensation for your damages. For instance, if a drunk driver hits your car and you suffer a ruptured spleen, you may file a personal injury lawsuit. You may receive compensation for your medical bills, lost pay, and physical/mental pain and suffering.
Another factor in Tennessee internal injury lawsuits is the state’s modified comparative fault rule. If the jury rules that you were 20% at fault for the accident, your potential compensation will be reduced by 20%.
If an accident leads to internal injuries that kill a loved one, the family may file a wrongful death lawsuit. This civil legal action can help the surviving family to deal with the tremendous financial costs of such a crushing loss. There is never enough compensation for the loss of a loved one, but a wrongful death action can assist the family to overcome severe financial hardships that are common after an unexpected death.
If you are considering a personal injury lawsuit, keep in mind that Tennessee law states that you have only one year from the date of the accident to file your claim. Time is of the essence, so it is important to talk to a personal injury attorney.
Hurt in an Accident? Contact John R. Colvin Today
Attorney John R. Colvin has helped Tennesseans with accident lawsuits for more than two decades. If you have questions about serious internal injuries suffered in a car accident or other type of accident, please contact John at 931-962-1044, or submit a request on our online form.