What Is A Low Impact Collision? 

Every car is different.  Because each accident involves a different location, cars, drivers, and other circumstances, no two accidents are alike.  Accidents can range from deadly high-speed collisions to very low impact fender benders that just leave scratches.  One specific collision that is very common is a low impact collision.

A low impact collision is generally defined as collisions of low-speed impacts.  These collisions usually occur between 12-15 mph and leave no skid marks.  The damage to the vehicles involved is often minor, and the occupants may or may not incur injury.

 

Some Examples of Low Impact Collisions:

  • Backing into someone leaving a parking spot
  • Swiping a parked vehicle
  • Bumping into someone from behind a stopped position
  • Reversing into another vehicle from a stopped position
  • Hitting a stopped vehicle at a speed below 15 mph

 

Low Impact Collisions Are Common

Low impact collisions are very common, and they can carry a myriad of possible injuries depending on the circumstances.  According to a report by Walter Forensic Engineering, in regards to General Motors, low impact collisions accounted for 1/3 of insurance claims by drivers.  Furthermore, the report goes on to detail potential injuries and variables that can affect the injury type in a low impact collision. They state, “Other factors which can influence the probability of injury include; the principal direction of the force applied to the vehicle, seat-back position and design, occupant neck length, head and torso position, knowledge of the impending impact, previous injury history and other occupant physical characteristics. Clearly each individual case must be analyzed in detail.”  Even though low impact collisions are common, and the injuries can vary, they should not be taken lightly.

Documented tests demonstrate that low-impact accidents can affect the soft tissues in a person’s neck or back, such as ligaments, tendons, and muscles. Elderly persons or those in poor physical condition who may have preexisting injuries in these areas are more susceptible to these types of injuries from impacts, even at low speeds.  12-15 mph collisions may not sound daunting, but considering that vehicles can weigh in excess of 3000 pounds, colliding at just 10 mph can result in a force of 5.6 tons.  This is significant.

 

Hurt? We Can Help

If you are involved in a low-impact car collision there are some steps to take to ensure you are protected.  Just because you may feel okay does not mean you will be fine.  Sometimes it can take some time for the shock of any accident to wear off before you notice pain or discomfort.

Low-collision accidents are sometimes ones you can walk away from, but they should be treated just as you would more serious accidents.  Because there are many variables to the accident and possible injuries, you should follow steps to make sure you are covered in case something comes from the incident.  It is always better to be safe than sorry

André Bélanger, a graduate of Loyola University, is a highly-respected criminal defense attorney serving the people of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and surrounding areas of Ascension Parish and New Orleans, for one of Baton Rouge’s top-25 law firms. In his 15 years of practicing law, Mr. Bélanger has handled thousands of criminal cases at both the pre-trial and trial stage, including approximately 200 trials. This trial experience includes homicide defense and prosecution, large drug conspiracies and fraud cases making Bélanger one of the few attorneys capable of handling even the largest, most complex federal cases.