Common Car Accident Injuries

Categories: Car Accidents

Common Car Accident Injuries

With its majestic mountains, stunning coastline, and bustling cities, Washington State offers a beautiful backdrop. While we all hope for smooth commutes and scenic drives, the reality is that collisions are a common occurrence. These accidents can have a devastating impact, causing not only vehicle damage but also a wide range of injuries.

Whether you’ve been a victim of a car accident or simply want to be prepared, understanding the most common injuries and the factors contributing to these crashes is crucial. This blog post will delve into the realities of car accidents in Washington, empowering you to prioritize safety on the road and seek guidance in the aftermath of a collision.

Statistics Surrounding Common Car Accident Injuries

In Washington state, car accidents are a significant concern. According to the Washington Traffic Safety Commission (WTSC), there were over 77,000 crashes reported in 2023 alone, with 810 fatalities. The WTSC’s data paints a sobering picture, revealing that driver behavior plays a huge role in a large percentage of these accidents:

  • Distracted drivers. Inattentive motorists using phones, eating, or engaging in other distracting activities contribute to roughly 20% of car accidents in Washington.
  • Driver impairment. An alarming 59% of crashes involve drivers impaired by drugs or alcohol. The astonishing number highlights the critical importance of driving sober and avoiding any substances that could cloud your judgment.
  • Speeding. Speeding contributes to approximately 31% of car accidents in Washington. Disregarding the speed limit can increase the risk of a collision and the severity of potential injuries.

If you believe that your injuries from a car accident were caused by a driver who was distracted, impaired, or speeding, seek legal guidance immediately. An experienced car accident attorneys in Washington can help recover the compensation you deserve.

The Spectrum of Physical Trauma

Injuries from car accidents can range from minor bumps and bruises to life-altering conditions. The severity of your injuries depends on many factors, including the force of impact, the type of collision, and your use of safety restraints. Below is a list of common car accident injuries.

Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)

Brain injuries can range from mild concussions to severe injuries impacting cognitive function, motor skills, and emotional regulation. Symptoms like headaches, dizziness, memory loss, and difficulty concentrating can all be indicative of a TBI. Seeking medical attention promptly after a head injury is crucial, even if symptoms seem mild initially. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers resources on recognizing and responding to TBIs.


Whiplash is a common neck injury resulting from the forceful back-and-forth movement of the head and neck. Symptoms like pain, stiffness, and headaches typically manifest within a few days of the accident. Treatment often involves physical therapy and pain medication.

Spinal Cord Injuries

Injuries to the spinal cord can be catastrophic, causing partial or complete paralysis and loss of sensation. The location and severity of the injury determine the extent of functional impairment.  Early medical intervention is essential to minimize potential complications.

Back Injuries

From muscle strains and sprains to herniated discs, back injuries encompass a wide range of issues. Symptoms can include pain, weakness, and difficulty moving. Treatment options vary depending on the specific injury.


Burns sustained in car accidents can occur due to contact with hot engine components or fires.  The severity of burns is classified by degree, with first-degree burns causing minimal damage and third-degree burns resulting in loss of deep tissue or severe injury. Burns require prompt medical attention to prevent infection and promote healing.

Internal Injuries

Often undetectable at the scene of the accident, internal injuries can pose a serious threat.  These injuries may involve bleeding in the organs or abdomen.  Symptoms like abdominal pain, nausea, and vomiting can signal internal bleeding, necessitating immediate medical evaluation.


Broken bones, or fractures, are a common consequence of car accidents. Symptoms include pain, swelling, bruising, and deformity in the affected area. Fractures typically require immobilization with a cast or splint while the bone heals.

Disfiguring Facial Injuries

Facial injuries can have a profound physical and emotional impact. These injuries can range from cuts and bruises to severe fractures requiring reconstructive surgery.



Though less frequent, car accidents can sometimes result in amputations. Amputation care focuses on treating the injury site, managing pain, and prosthetic rehabilitation to optimize function.

Soft Tissue Injuries

Soft tissue injuries involve damage to muscles, tendons, and ligaments. These injuries often manifest as pain, swelling, and bruising. Treatment for soft tissue injuries usually involves rest, physical therapy, and pain medication.

Beyond the Physical: Emotional and Psychological Trauma

Car accidents can have a profound emotional and psychological impact, even without physical injuries. According to the National Library of Medicine, car crashes are the leading cause of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in the general population. PTSD is a mental health condition that can develop due to exposure to a terrifying event, and car accidents can certainly qualify. Flashbacks, nightmares, and hypervigilance are all potential symptoms of PTSD. Anxiety and depression are also common after a car accident.

If you’re experiencing emotional distress following a car accident, seeking professional help from a therapist or counselor can be invaluable in your healing journey. A mental health professional can provide support, coping mechanisms, and treatment options to help you manage emotional and psychological trauma. Additionally, an attorney can provide legal advice on compensation claims for such injuries.

Don’t Face Your Car Accident Alone. Get the Legal Support You Deserve.

At Brett McCandlis Brown & Conner PLLC, we understand the impact of injuries from car accidents and are here to help you navigate every step of the process. For over 40 years, our experienced personal injury attorneys have been fighting for the rights of Washington residents injured in car accidents. With six conveniently located offices across the state, we’re here to provide you with the legal support you need.

Our commitment goes beyond just legal expertise. We offer comprehensive legal support from start to finish, aiming to help you feel informed and empowered throughout your case. We will thoroughly investigate the details of your accident, fight for the compensation you deserve, and guide you through every stage of the legal process. Don’t settle for less than you deserve. Contact Brett McCandlis Brown & Conner PLLC today for a free consultation. Let us help you get back on the road to recovery.

Author Photo

Matt Conner

Matt Conner, a distinguished attorney at Brett McCandlis Brown & Conner, brings a unique blend of financial and legal expertise to his practice. Graduating with a double major in mathematics and economics from Willamette University, he initially honed his analytical skills as an economist for the State of Oregon. Specializing in personal injury law, Matt is adept at handling a wide array of cases, including multiparty litigation against large entities, and claims involving gun violence, sexual and police misconduct, car accidents, traumatic brain injuries, and wrongful death. Admitted to the Washington State Bar in 2014, he is known for his tenacious advocacy and deep compassion for clients facing life-altering challenges. His approach is not just about legal representation; it’s about restoring lives.