In America, car accidents occur about 17,000 times daily, and many of those result in an injury of some kind. With statistics like these, it is understandable that drivers want to be prepared in the event of a collision to improve their chances of sustaining less severe injuries. One question is often asked when it comes to a collision: can you brace yourself in a car crash?
To Brace, or Not to Brace
Often, bracing for impact is a natural reflex rather than something people think to do in an impending crash. In many situations, if you have enough time to consciously brace for impact, you may have enough time to avoid the collision altogether. If you are in a situation where you have time to brace for impact but no time to avoid the crash, you should brace yourself.
Research shows that people who brace for impact in a car crash end up with milder injuries and better long-term outcomes physically. The theory behind this is that bracing yourself leads to your body taking up less of the force of impact than it would if you were to stay relaxed. Whiplash can occur even at low speeds, so bracing for impact when you are able may be a way to avoid long-term spinal injury or traumatic brain injury after a collision.
How to Brace for Impact
- Brace your head against the headrest to reduce the risk of hitting your head against it hard in a crash. Always adjust your headrest to the proper height before driving.
- Stay facing forward (but don’t lean forward). Turning your head during impact can increase the risk and level of injury. Leaning forward can also increase the risk and severity of an injury, so stay sitting upright with your back touching as much of the seat as possible.
- Tense your body as if you’re preparing to take a punch.
In addition to bracing for impact, drivers should also wear a seatbelt and ensure their airbags are working properly to increase their chances of walking away from a crash with fewer injuries.
Important Steps After a Collision
After a collision, you may be experiencing a rush of adrenaline that mutes the effects of any injuries you sustained. Even if you are feeling fine, call 911 to report the accident so it is documented and exchange insurance information with the other driver. It is also wise to seek medical evaluation from your doctor, even if you don’t think you’ve been injured. If you know you’ve been injured, seek medical attention as soon as possible. Once you’ve received the medical care you need, consider seeking legal representation from an experienced personal injury attorney to file any applicable claims.
You Need an Attorney
Whether you’ve been wrongfully injured or have caused an injury to someone else, it is important to obtain representation from an experienced personal injury lawyer. At Peach & Weathers, we will help you determine your options and build a strong case following your collision. To learn about how our services can benefit you, contact us.