Car Accident Forces and the Impact on the Human Body

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Car Accident Forces and the Human Body

Driving a car can be inherently dangerous. It involves operating a heavy and fast-moving machine in a shared environment with other people and various road conditions. The level of danger can vary depending on several factors such as speeding, distracted driving, driving under the influence, reckless driving, poor weather conditions, construction zones, uneven roads, driver inexperience, fatigue and more. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that over 1.35 million people die each year due to traffic accidents and millions more suffer non-fatal injuries. In fact, one of the country’s deadliest roads is right here in Tampa. AAA routinely ranks I-4 in the top 5 deadliest roads and once recorded an estimated 1.41 fatalities per mile. Based on the latest available data (and study from ValuePenguin), Florida accounts for 5 of the top 10 deadliest roads including US-1, I-95, US-41, I-75, and US-27.

No one ever wants to be in an accident and government agencies, law enforcement, and other organizations continually work to improve driving safety through improving infrastructure, public awareness, and stricter traffic law enforcement. However, those who have been in an accident can attest to the series of complex and traumatic events during a car accident. The specific effects on the body depend on various factors such as the type of collision, speed, direction of impact, safety restraints, and the overall health of the individuals involved.

Dr. Deryk Harting, a chiropractor at one of the highest rated auto injury care medical facilities in the Tampa Bay area, provides insight on how car accident forces impact the human body.  Here are some of the main impacts and types of forces encountered by the human body in a car accident:

  • Inertia and Rapid Deceleration: When a car suddenly decelerates or comes to a stop during a collision, the passengers’ bodies tend to continue moving forward due to inertia. This can cause the body to impact the interior parts of the vehicle, such as the dashboard, steering wheel, or windows. This can lead to various injuries of the head, chest, spine, and lower limbs.
  • Seat Belt and Airbag Use: Properly wearing a seat belt is crucial during a car accident. It helps restrain the body and prevent occupants from colliding with the interior of the vehicle or being ejected. Airbags provide an additional cushioning effect to protect occupants from striking hard surfaces. Airbag deployment can also lead to injuries of the face, chest, or limbs.
  • Impact and Contact Injuries: The impact force generated during a collision can cause injuries to various body parts such as the head, neck, chest, abdomen, and extremities. These injuries can range from mild bruises and contusions to more severe fractures, lacerations, and internal organ damage.
  • Whiplash: Whiplash is a common injury in rear-end collisions. The rapid back-and-forth motion of the neck can cause strains and sprains in the neck muscles and ligaments leading to pain and stiffness.
  • Shear Force: Shear force is generated when different parts of the body move in opposite directions. For example, during a side-impact collision, the upper body may move sideways while the lower body remains in place, leading to shear forces on the spine and torso.
  • Ejection: If occupants are not wearing seat belts, there is a risk of ejection from the vehicle during a collision. Ejection can result in severe injuries and is associated with higher fatality rates.
  • Rollover Accidents: In rollover accidents, occupants can experience multiple impacts as the vehicle rolls or flips. This can lead to a range of injuries including head injuries, broken bones, and internal injuries.
  • Crushing and Compression: In severe accidents, where vehicle structure is significantly compromised, occupants may experience crushing injuries if parts of the car collapse or intrude into the passenger compartment.
  • Internal Injuries: The sudden and violent forces involved in a car accident can cause internal injuries to organs such as the brain, lungs, liver, spleen, and kidneys, even in the absence of visible external injuries.
  • Psychological Impact: Car accidents can also have a psychological impact on individuals, leading to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, and depression.

To mitigate the impact of these forces on the human body during a car accident, it is critical to use seat belts and properly installed child safety seats. Additionally, defensive driving, obeying traffic laws, and maintaining a safe speed and distance from other vehicles can also help reduce the likelihood of accidents and minimize the forces experienced during collisions. And lastly, if you’ve been in an accident and suffered an injury it is imperative to be checked by a healthcare professional as soon as possible.

— This article is written by Deryk Harting, DC, one of the members of Chambers Medical Group’s team of car accident chiropractors who offer a variety of treatments and therapies ranging from diagnostic testing to various soft tissue therapies for car accidents and injuries in Florida.

— This article is written by Aaron Workman, DC, one of the members of Chambers Medical Group’s team of car accident chiropractors who offer a variety of treatments and therapies ranging from diagnostic testing to various soft tissue therapies for car accidents and injuries in Kentucky.




















































Have you been in a car accident? If you or somebody you know has been in a car accident, be sure that you seek medical attention from a car accident doctor or car accident chiropractor to treat your injuries. Visit Chambers Medical Group  to receive world-class medical treatment for your injuries.

Chambers Medical Group has car accident medical clinics in the following locations:

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