Truck accidents are one of several possible road collisions. Like other types of road accidents, truck accidents may result in minor and major injuries. However, truck accidents tend to have more devastating effects than other vehicle collisions due to their sheer size and weight.
Unlike other car accidents where the drivers are usually held responsible for damages, trucking companies are, more often than not, liable for the resulting damages. This is because truck accidents occur as a result of the trucking company’s negligence. Said negligence could be in form of poor maintenance of their vehicles or hiring unfit truck drivers.
Regardless of the perceived mildness of your injuries or who is at fault for the crash, the first answer to the question of what to do after a truck accident is to call the police. Your injuries might turn out to be severe and in need of immediate attention, such as internal bleeding. Furthermore, the earlier the authorities arrive at the scene, the better the chances of obtaining important evidence that can be used in an injury claim.
The common types of truck accident injuries include:
Due to the sheer size of trucks, one of the types of injuries that often occur from the collision is fractures. While simple fractures usually heal on their own and only require a cast to hold the bones in place, compound and comminuted fractures require hospitalization and surgery before they can start to heal. Even then, the injury may never fully heal.
Furthermore, if left untreated for a long time, fractures can cause other serious medical problems such as infection, nerve damage, and internal bleeding.
Burns can occur if the collision with the truck results in a fiery explosion. There’s a high chance of this happening if the truck in question is a fuel tanker with a ruptured tank. Burns can be difficult to treat and may require immediate and future surgeries. Depending on the severity of the burns and the level of medical care, a burn victim may suffer from permanent disfiguration, infection, and death.
Truck accidents may also result in friction burns where the accident victim’s body violently rubs against the body of a vehicle or the road surface.
Two of the most severe and long-lasting injuries that can ensue in a truck accident are brain and spinal injuries. Brain injuries from accidents are called Traumatic Brain Injuries (TMI) and they include concussions, edemas, skull fractures, and hematomas.
Although TMIs present as physical injury to the brain, they may be undetectable in regular scans such as X-rays and CT scans. Specialized brain imaging procedures, however, can detect elusive brain injuries. Brain injuries can have severe implications in the sufferer’s life such as life-long illnesses/disabilities and death.
Spinal injuries cause disruptions in the central nervous system by impeding the communication between the brain and other parts of the body. Like brain injuries, spinal injuries can result in temporary and permanent disabilities.
The part of the body located at the point of impact on the spine may become paralyzed, furthermore, the paralysis may spread beyond the point of impact. Two common types of paralysis due to spinal damage are paraplegia and quadriplegia.
Some parts of the vehicles involved in a collision, such as glass and metallic parts, can break off and puncture or tear into the skin. Although it is not as severe as brain injuries, facial lacerations can result in permanent disfigurement of the victim.