A head-on collision occurs when the front of one car strikes the front end of another car. They are one of the most serious accidents that a person can experience. These types of car accidents produce painful and catastrophic injuries, severe property damage, lifelong complications, mental and emotional trauma, hefty medical bills, and so much more.
The National Safety Council reports there were close to 47,000 fatalities from car accidents in 2021, and 43% of them (20,200) involved a collision between vehicles. Of the 20,200 accidents, about 29% (approximately 5,900) were head-on collisions. Only angle collisions (also known as side-impact or T-bone crashes) were deadlier.
The types of injuries that result from head-on collisions
The worst part about these car accidents is that they usually happen unexpectedly at high speeds, making it very difficult for the human body to withstand and survive two large, heavy objects meeting with strong forces headed in opposite directions.
Unfortunately, most people involved in a head-on collision do not leave the scene without severe and permanent injuries. These injuries can include:
- Traumatic brain injuries: Individuals who are involved in a head-on collision often experience a forceful blow to the head, which can lead to traumatic brain injuries. These types of injuries are very serious and need medical treatment as quickly as possible. Therefore, even if you do not present any symptoms of a traumatic brain injury, you should go to the nearest emergency room immediately as the symptoms associated with a traumatic brain injury can sometimes take days to appear. A few of the most common symptoms to look out for are headaches, memory problems, speech issues, and mood swings.
- Dental, facial, and eye injuries: After experiencing a blow to the head and face, the individual may suffer dental, facial, and eye injuries. Some of the injuries they may experience are broken teeth, broken jawbone, vision loss, and more. These injuries are often very painful and extremely difficult to completely repair.
- Internal bleeding and organ damage: Head-on collisions involve piercing parts, flying objects, and severe force and impact. When a person is involved in a head-on accident, they may have internal bleeding as well as significant organ damage.
- Spinal cord and back injuries: During a head-on collision, the spinal cord can be bent, turned, or completely damaged. When this happens, the brain and other parts of the body can no longer communicate, causing individuals to possibly lose function in certain body parts or limbs.
- Whiplash and neck injuries: Most people assume that whiplash and neck injuries only occur in rear-end accidents. However, these injuries are actually very common in head-on collisions. The reason for this is because the impact can cause the individual’s neck to move or snap rapidly, leading to a severe injury.
- Broken and fractured bones: Broken and fractured bones are very common in head-on collisions. As a result, individuals spend years undergoing surgeries, physical therapy, occupational therapy, and more. Sometimes, their bones are irreparable, and they must learn how to cope with their permanent disabilities.
- Loss of limbs and amputations: When a head-on collision occurs, loss of legs, arms, hands, and feet happens frequently. This is not only physically altering, but it can also lead to many years of emotional and mental trauma and depression.
- Cuts and lacerations: Sharp objects, such as glass and broken metal, may pierce the skin during a head-on crash. As a result, individuals may suffer deep cuts and lacerations that may damage the skin, nerves, muscles, and tissues. Permanent scarring and disfigurement are likely to occur as well depending on the extent and severity of the injuries.
Common causes of head-on accidents in Tulsa, OK
Most head-on car crashes are the result of driver negligence. There are times when road design or lack of lights and signage may play a role, but most of the time it’s related to the driver’s actions. This can include:
- Driving the wrong way: Some people who are visiting a city or town that they have never been to may not realize that there are certain one-way roads. Age can also play a role. A 2021 study about fatal highway accidents by the AAA Foundation (using older data from 2009-2018) found that wrong-way crashes accounted for 3,885 deaths during that time period. According to their findings, the odds of a wrong-way crash increased when the drivers were over the age of 70, or when there were no passengers in the car.
- Distracted driving: Texting, talking on the phone, surfing the web, posting on social media, and putting on makeup are common forms of distracted driving. When people do any of these things while driving, they cannot give their full attention to driving. As a result, they may veer into a different lane, run a stop light, or fail to yield the right of way, which could cause a head-on collision.
- Fatigue or drowsy driving: If you drive while tired or fatigued, you may fall asleep behind the wheel. This can cause you to lose control of your vehicle and collide with another car. You should never operate a vehicle while tired or after taking medications that cause drowsiness.
- Alcohol or drug use: Impaired drivers are dangerous drivers, no matter what substance they take. A drunk or drugged driver can miss signs, fall asleep behind the wheel, become distracted, or otherwise behave erratically.
If you have been involved in a head-on collision due to another driver’s negligence, please reach out to a Tulsa car accident attorney from Biby Law Firm at your earliest opportunity. Our team advocates and fights aggressively for our clients to receive maximum compensation for their injuries, medical expenses, loss of quality of life, and more. You can lean on us during these tough and difficult times. All you have to do is call our office or submit our contact form to get started with your free consultation today.
Jacob Biby has spent his legal career helping folks just like you get the resources they need after a personal injury. He completed his undergraduate degree at Oklahoma State University and earned his Juris Doctorate from the University of Tulsa in 2008. Jacob is licensed to practice in all Oklahoma state and federal courts, and has limited his career to representing individuals and families who were injured by the negligence of other people or corporations. Learn more about Jacob Biby.