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Common Types of Car Crashes

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Most of us cannot wait to sit behind the wheel and feel the freedom of hitting the open road. What most of us don’t bank on, however, is being involved in a car crash (you may wish to check out what to do when you’ve been in a car crash if you are yet to experience a crash).

​Let’s look at some common types of car crashes that could happen to any of us each time we take a car journey.

Head-on collisions
Typically, and especially where speed is involved, head on collisions present a heightened risk of serious injury or even death. As the name would suggest, this type of road accident occurs where two vehicles collide in a head-on impact that presents both vehicles with an immediate stopping force. Aside from the threat to life, head-on collisions also commonly present serious mechanical issues, in that most vehicles have a ‘front engine’ layout, meaning the engine is housed at the front of the vehicle. In many cases, both vehicles will have to be scrapped.

Rear-end collisions
Rear-end collisions are perhaps the most common road accident. Although factors such as low sun, wet surfaces, and sudden braking from the vehicle ahead may be claimed by the driver at fault as reasons for the crash, the fact remains that if the rear vehicle had observed an adequate stopping distance for all eventualities, the accident could have been avoided. Drivers who are being tailgated may wish to avoid the chance of a rear-end collision by changing lanes or find a turning to allow the negligent driver to pass.

Side impact collisions (also known as T-bone collisions)
This type of collision typically occurs at junctions, where one vehicle attempts to pull into traffic without checking if it is safe to do so. The result can be a side impact by the front of an approaching vehicle. Where side impacts occur, serious injury may be caused to the occupants of the turning vehicle seated on the side of impact, with the outer leg, arm, and ribs bearing the brunt of the crash.

Sideswipes – side contact from a car in the next lane
This type of injury typically presents less of a concern in terms of injury to the occupants of either vehicle involved, and more of a concern in terms of damage to the vehicle. Sideswipes occur where two vehicles come into contact while travelling side by side in the same direction (i.e. in adjacent lanes). Drivers who fear that the erratic driving behaviours of a motorist travelling in the next lane may result in a side swipe should drop back to reduce the risk of any such impact.

Single vehicle impacts
Not all road accidents involve more than one vehicle. In the case of single vehicle impacts, the driver is normally held accountable for having left the road or for having caused a collision between their vehicle and a static object such as a parked car. However, situations such as oil spills that have not been dealt with could mean that the driver is not at fault for the single vehicle crash.


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