When seated in a car, your legs are usually out in front of you. This could potentially mean that your legs are the first things to get hit if the car crashes. Alternatively, if the front of the passenger area is crushed in, your legs could be crushed. While most car accidents are not severe, it is common to face a range of injuries to your legs in a car crash.
Car Crash Leg Injury Statistics
According to Florida’s Integrated Report Exchange System (FIRES), there were approximated 401,164 car crashes in Florida in 2021, the most recent year with full data available. Of these crashes, 163,928 involved injury, resulting in 252,900 individuals with car accident injuries. Unfortunately, there is no good data on where the victims suffered injury. Our internal data suggests that leg injuries occur in approximately 10% of all accidents involving injury to the person. Leg injuries are much less common than neck, back and head injuries.
Some injuries that could apply to the legs are quite common in car crashes. For instance, broken bone injuries are some of the most common leg injuries people might suffer in a car crash, and these are one of the more common car accident injuries people face, aside from things like cuts and scrapes.
While it is not specifically a leg injury, many people also suffer paralysis after serious car crashes. The number of car accident victims who are paralyzed each year is nowhere near the total number of people injured in car crashes, but spinal cord injuries resulting in paralysis or inability to walk occur each year. While the injury may not occur in the legs, spinal cord injury can result in lost feeling and control in your legs, resulting in paraplegia or quadriplegia.
Common Causes of Leg Injuries in Car Accidents
While we may not have data on how common these types of accidents are, we do have information on how they can occur.
As mentioned, your position in the seat determines where you are and what dangers your legs are exposed to. If you are seated upright in a normal seated position, your legs will usually be under the dashboard if you are sitting in the front of the car. This area of the car may be reinforced in many cars to prevent it from crushing in and injuring drivers and front-seat passengers during a crash. However, if you are sitting in another position, you could be seriously injured.
Many leg injuries occur when passengers and drivers sit differently in a car. Some drivers move their left leg up from next to the pedals and sit with their one leg crossed under their body – or even with their foot on their seat and their knee toward their chest. Passengers may recline in their seats and put their feet on the dash – or even out the window. Sitting in these positions is not recommended, as it increases your risk of leg injuries in a serious accident. If you are pushed into the dashboard, your leg can crush against your body if it is up against your chest. Similarly, having your legs on the dash or out the window exposes them to serious injury if a car strikes that area of the car.
Other leg injuries occur when a driver or passenger is pinned inside the vehicle. During a front-end crash or a side-impact collision, the driver or passenger compartment may be crushed in. If this happens, you could get your leg caught in the car, potentially requiring the Jaws of Life or other tools to get you free. When this happens, you could face serious crush injuries and broken bones, as well as cuts and puncture wounds. You may also receive additional injuries if you try to pull your leg free, cutting or scraping your leg on the way out.
Suing for Leg Injuries in a Car Accident
If you suffered serious injuries to your legs – or anywhere else on your body – it is important to consider filing a lawsuit for your car accident injuries. When you are injured in a car accident in Florida, Florida law expects you to file for compensation through your no-fault insurance. However, if your injuries total $10,000 or more in damages or are permanent, you could be able to file a lawsuit instead. Filing a lawsuit can allow you to claim 100% of the damages you suffered instead of paying deductibles and facing percentage caps on damages from your insurance policy. Additionally, a lawsuit opens your ability to claim pain and suffering damages, something your insurance policy likely does not cover.
Call Our Miami Car Accident Lawyer for a Free Consultation
Serious injuries to your legs can have a devastating effect on your life. If you were seriously injured in a car crash, call Prosper Shaked Accident Injury Attorneys PA today. Prosper Shaked offers free consultations on personal injury claims to help victims understand their right to sue and how much their case might be worth. To schedule a free legal consultation, call our law offices today at (305) 694-2676.