CALIFORNIA BRAIN INJURY ATTORNEY - CONCUSSION LAWYER
MICHAEL REHM - (800) 978-0754
Traumatic brain injuries are a common outcome of collisions between a vehicle and a pedestrian, a bicyclist, a motorcyclist, or another vehicle. While airbags and motorcycle helmets offer some protection against brain injuries, those protections can be defeated by the size and speed of the colliding vehicle. Bicycle helmets provide scant protection. Pedestrians rarely have any protection at all.
Brain injuries are usually caused by impacts with the skull. A head striking the pavement or a car striking the head are the typical impacts that cause brain injuries in motor vehicle accidents. Brain injuries caused by tripping or slipping and falling occur when the accident victim's head strikes a sidewalk or floor. A tool dropped from a height at a construction site can also cause a brain injury when it strikes the head of an unsuspecting bystander.
Some brain injuries occur when the brain strikes the skull because the head has moved violently. After a rear-end collision, the head stops moving when it hits a headrest or when a safety harness restrains the driver's movement, but the brain continues in motion until it strikes the skull. A collision that causes the head to move backward and then forward can result in two impacts as the brain slams into the back and front of the skull. Similarly violent motion occurs when the head strikes an airbag that forces it back against a headrest.
Traumatic Brain Injury Statistics
More than 60,000 people in the United States die every year from traumatic brain injuries. Gunshots are the most common cause of fatal brain injuries. Some of those are inflicted accidentally. The person who fires the shot can be held responsible for an accidental gunshot injury, as can a gun owner who fails to lock and secure a gun, making it possible for a child to treat the gun as a toy.
More than 1.7 million Americans experience a traumatic brain injury every year. About 35% of brain injuries are caused by falls. While a fall from a height produces the greatest risk of a brain injury, tripping over an object and slipping on a wet surface are also frequent causes of brain injuries.
More than 17% of traumatic brain injuries are caused by motor vehicle accidents. While high-speed crashes produce the greatest risk of brain injuries, a collision at neighborhood traffic speeds can generate enough force to cause the head to strike the steering wheel or interior frame of the car. A collision with a motorcyclist, bicyclist, or pedestrian at any speed creates a serious risk of a brain injury.
Classification of Brain Injuries
Brain injuries range from mild to severe. Brain injury symptoms may include a headache, ringing in the ears, confusion, blurred vision, speech difficulties, memory loss, vomiting, and sleep disturbances, among others. If the injury victim experiences those symptoms for less than half an hour, neurologists classify the injury as mild. Most concussions cause mild brain injuries.
A healthy brain will usually recover from a mild injury, although the brain is at risk of a more serious injury if a second concussion occurs before the brain has healed. Concussion protocols require football players to stay off the field after a concussion so that the brain can heal before the player takes the risk of experiencing a new concussion. Any person who has a concussion should exercise extreme caution for at least two weeks to avoid a second blow to the head.
Brain injuries are classified as moderate when the victim loses consciousness for more than half an hour but less than six hours, or when symptoms persist for more than half an hour. When the victim is experiences symptoms or remains unconscious for more than six hours, neurologists classify the injury as severe.
Moderate and severe brain injuries may produce additional symptoms, including coma, seizures, loss of coordination or balance, weakness, persistent memory deficits, personality changes, weakness in limbs, depression, fatigue, and cognitive difficulties. A serious brain injury can limit the victim's ability to work or take care of his or her personal needs.
California Brain Injury Lawyer
Damage to the brain can include bleeding, swelling, and bruising. Brain tissues and veins may be torn during a collision. Skull fractures can cause bone fragments to penetrate the brain. While mild injuries typically heal, the outcome of moderate and severe brain injuries is more difficult to predict. Any brain injury, however, has the potential to cause a permanent disability.
Brain injury victims are entitled to recover compensation from a negligent person or business who caused the injury. Compensation should include all future costs of coping with the injury, including rehabilitative services. Pain, suffering, and emotional distress is usually the largest component of compensation. California Brain Injury Lawyer Michael Rehm can evaluate an injury victim's case and offer advice about bringing a claim against the responsible party. To find out how the law applies to your brain injury case, call Personal Injury Attorney Michael Rehm at (800) 978-0754.