There are all types of accidents you can get into while driving on the road. One of the most common types of accidents is the sideswipe. It might be just a gentle bump and scrape, or it could be far worse, amounting to sometimes catastrophic injuries. These types of accidents can happen anywhere, but are most common on roads with many lanes. Whether it’s because a negligent driver was distracted by texting, or was simply new to the area and didn’t know their surroundings, a sideswipe accident can happen at any time. When this happens, it’s important to call your Chicago car accident attorney so that you can receive compensation from the negligent party that caused your injuries.
What is a sideswipe accident?
A sideswipe accident usually occurs when one vehicle drives along the side of another vehicle, crashing into them in a parallel manner. These are usually seen at exit and on ramps on the highway, where merging into active traffic happens. They are also common on expressways and interstate roads that have multiple lanes of traffic. While most sideswipe accidents occur between two moving vehicles, they can also occur when one driver is parked, and another comes up fast alongside them, crashing into them that way. Sometimes, these types of accidents are seen in hit and run cases.
What causes sideswipe accidents?
There are several factors that can lead to a higher risk of sideswipe accidents, including:
- Blind spots. These are zones around your vehicle where visibility via side-mirrors or rear-view mirrors is minimal. This means someone might not be paying attention or using proper techniques to check their blind spots, which can lead to a sideswipe accident.
- Driver inattention. Driver inattention is a broad category of negligence. Distracted driving is a good example of driver inattention, or rubbernecking at something on the side of the road. Anything that draws a driver’s attention away from the road is a danger to everyone else around them.
- Unfamiliar route. Chicago attracts lots of tourists every year, and they are sometimes easy to spot just by how they drive. They might swerve into other lanes if they are distracted by trying to find the right street, or performing a dangerous maneuver to try and get to where they’re attempting to go.
- Failure to stay in lane. Whether from drunk driving or poor weather conditions, there are many reasons why someone might swerve into another lane, causing a sideswipe accident.
- Mirrors improperly angled. If a driver’s side or rearview mirrors are directed at improper angles, it may mean they won’t see certain vehicles approaching or trying to pass them.
- Driver fatigue. This often occurs with people who have been driving a long time, or work long hours. Falling asleep or becoming drowsy at the wheel can be as dangerous as drinking while under the influence.
Sideswipe accidents can happen anywhere, but under these circumstances, the risk for them increases greatly. It is important to be vigilant while driving, not just of your driving, but the drivers around you as well. You can not predict what they are going to do, or in what condition they might be driving.
What are common injuries from Chicago sideswipe accidents?
There is a wide array of injuries that you can suffer when involved in a sideswipe accident. Some of the most common injuries include:
- Traumatic brain injury. When your head is hit hard enough, it can damage your brain, causing bruises and contusions leading to swelling and internal bleeding. Even a concussion is a minor traumatic brain injury (TBI), so even if you think that you are all right, you should always make sure to see a medical professional just in case. Symptoms of TBIs include headaches, nausea, dizziness, confusion, poor vision, periods of unconsciousness, and mood swings.
- Spinal cord injuries. The spinal cord is what the brain uses to send out orders to the rest of your body. Movement, speaking, eating – while the brain tells your body to do these things, it needs the spinal cord to transport those messages. If it is damaged, then that pathway becomes damaged as well, leading to problems for your entire body. Paralysis can be an outcome of a spinal cord injury.
- Broken bones. While common, broken bones are serious injuries that take months to heal, and can make it impossible to do your job. That means not only are you physically injured, but also that your finances may also be in trouble as well.
- Whiplash. When the neck is aggressively and quickly whipped back and forth, it can cause soft tissue damage. Symptoms of this, which include mostly neck pain, can be noticeable right after the accident or days later. Other symptoms include dizziness, headaches, and back/shoulder pain.
These injuries have the ability to change your life forever. You may suffer from complications during your treatment, leading to more time at the hospital, more money spent on medical bills, and more time out of work.
Sideswipe accidents can take you completely by surprise, and they can turn your life upside down. If you have been involved in a sideswipe accident, and you were injured due to someone’s negligence, then you deserve to be compensated for your pain, suffering, and financial losses. The experienced car accident attorneys at Gainsberg Law will make you our priority. For an initial consultation, call Gainsberg law at 312-600-9585 or use our contact page. We have spent years helping the injured in Chicago and Cook County.
Neal S. Gainsberg has spent the last 20 years fighting to protect the rights of the injured in Chicago and throughout Illinois. From consumer rights and bankruptcy to catastrophic injuries and wrongful death, Mr. Gainsberg stands up to large corporations, insurance companies, creditors and hospital administrators to ensure that his clients’ futures are safe and secure. Learn More