The Dangerousness Of T-Bone Crashes May Be Underrated

No traffic accident is “good.” They are at least upsetting, even if just a fender-bender, and cause expense and inconvenience. It only gets worse from there, with people injured or worse and vehicles destroyed. Head-on vehicle collisions probably are the worst. Fatalities are common, and head-on crashes are among the leading causes of traffic fatalities. No matter how lethal head-on crashes might be, they aren’t the only dangerous type of traffic accident. Side-impact crashes, frequently called “T-bone” crashes, can be just as deadly.

If you or a loved one has been involved in a side-impact collision, contact the Redding, CA, car accident attorneys of Maire & Deedon.

Side-Impact Collisions Carry a High Risk Of Injuries Or Death

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that nearly 43,000 people died in traffic accidents in 2021. That is up 10.5% from the traffic death total for 2020. More than half of those fatalities came in head-on collisions, while about 23% of those traffic fatalities were caused by side-impact collisions. T-bone accidents almost always happen at intersections where one driver runs a red light or drives through a stop light and runs into the side of another vehicle entering the intersection.

There are several reasons T-bone collisions are so dangerous. One factor lies in vehicle design. Because of the prevalence of fatalities resulting from head-on collisions, car designers build significant design features to minimize deaths from head-on collisions.

Primary among these are crumple zones – the engine compartment for head-on crashes and the trunk space for rear-end accidents. These features, combined with airbags, reduce the lethality of head-on crashes. There is no crumple zone for vehicles struck from the side, and until recently, vehicle designs did not include side-impact airbags. According to some estimates, vehicles have five times the ability to absorb head-on collisions compared to the ability to absorb T-bone impacts.

Another main contributor to the deadliness of side-impact crashes lies in the disparity in the sizes of vehicles on the road. At the same time that hybrid and electric vehicles are rising in popularity in some areas, so too is the popularity of SUVs and pickup trucks. Larger, heavier vehicles cause more damage than smaller, lighter vehicles in any kind of traffic collision, including side-impact crashes.

All Kinds Of Injuries Are Possible In T-Bone Crashes

Any kind of injury, and any level of severity, including death, are possible from side impact crashes. Among the common types of injuries incurred during side-impact collisions are:

  • Broken bones
  • Spinal cord injuries, often resulting in some degree of paralysis
  • Cuts and burns
  • Brain injuries

Worse, a T-bone collision often pushes the stricken car into the path of other traffic, sometimes resulting in secondary collisions that can cause further injuries.

If You Were Injured In A Side-Impact Traffic Accident, You Should Call The Attorneys of Maire & Deedon

If you have been injured in a side-impact car crash, or if a family member has been injured or killed in such an accident, talk to the California automobile accident attorneys of Maire & Deedon. It is likely in side-impact crashes that the driver of the vehicle delivering the side impact failed to yield the right of way, possibly by not stopping at a traffic signal or stop sign, meaning that the driver often is at fault. We can evaluate your claim, explain your options, and assist you in getting the monetary compensation you deserve.