Seat Belt Syndrome After A Car Accident
If you want to increase your chances of surviving a car crash or not sustaining severe injuries in a car crash, it is advisable that you always wear a seat belt when in a car. According to the CDC, wearing a seat belt reduces the risk of serious injury by 50% and the risk of death by 45%. A seat belt can prevent you from not being thrown out of the car during an accident. However, the reality is that while seat belts have prevented numerous deaths and serious injuries, they also cause injuries, sometimes even serious ones. Injuries caused by seat belts in a crash are known as seat belt syndrome.
What Is Seat Belt Syndrome?
Seat belt syndrome is a group of injuries that occur in a crash due to seat belts. Seat belt syndrome is common among people involved in high-impact collisions. Some common signs of seat belt syndrome include marks such as bruises and/or abrasions on the skin that have a seat belt shape, abdominal pain, abnormal bowel movements, and loss of motion. If, for instance, you have a bruise in a belt-shaped pattern across your abdomen, you should seek immediate medical attention. Do not ignore the bruising as it might end up causing complications.
What Causes Seat Belt Syndrome?
Seat belt syndrome often occurs when the pressure exerted by a safety belt compresses an accident victim’s abdomen and chest. Unfortunately, when this happens, it can result in damage to a person’s spine and/or internal organs.
Common Seat Belt Injuries
Seat belts can cause a number of different injuries. The following are some of the common seat belt injuries;
- Abrasions and lacerations: Abrasions and lacerations are commonly found across the neck, chest, or lower abdomen. But they can occur on any part of the body that comes into contact with the seat belt during a crash. A laceration occurs when the seat belt cuts into the skin, and abrasion occurs when the seat belt scrapes the top part of the skin. It is crucial that you don’t leave abrasions and lacerations untreated as they may result in, among other things, infections.
- Fractured or bruised ribs: In a car accident, a seat belt can restrict the ribs to the extent that they crack, dislocate, bruise, or even break.
- Abdominal trauma: Seat belts can result in several abdominal injuries. For example, seat belts can tear the tendons and muscles that hold organs together.
- Chest injuries: For example, a seat belt can lead to a person suffering injuries to the chest muscles.
Recovering Compensation for Injuries Caused by a Seat Belt
If you suffered injuries in a car crash due to a seat belt, you may be able to file a claim and recover compensation if the accident was not your fault (or at least not entirely your fault). You may be eligible to recover damages associated with your injury from the negligent party.
You should note that if a car crash resulted in you suffering a seat belt injury, you are only allowed to file a claim against a vehicle manufacturer if the seat belt malfunctioned.
Contact a Delray Beach Car Accident Lawyer
If you were involved in a Florida car accident and need legal guidance, contact our experienced Delray Beach car accident lawyers at Lyons & Snyder.