Each year, about 6 million accidents occur in the United States. The results are devastating, with tens of thousands of people losing their lives. Millions more suffer injuries, some of which are life-changing.
Drunk driving accounts for 30 percent of traffic accidents in the US. Unfortunately, it isn't just the driver who is at risk when they get behind the wheel after drinking. Passengers in the vehicle are also vulnerable. Here are four injuries that passengers can suffer as a result of drunk driving.
Whiplash is a neck injury caused by sudden, violent movement of the head. It often occurs in car accidents when the driver hits the brakes suddenly or is rear-ended by another vehicle.
The symptoms of whiplash can include neck pain and stiffness, headaches, dizziness, and fatigue. In severe cases, it can lead to nerve damage and paralysis.
Passengers in a car that's involved in a drunk driving accident are at risk of suffering broken bones. The most common fractures are of the arm, leg, and pelvis. However, any bone in the body can be broken in a car accident. The severity of the injury will depend on the force of the collision.
The spinal cord is a bundle of nerves that runs from the brain down the back. It controls movement and sensation in the body. A spinal cord injury can occur when the vertebrae, which protect the spinal cord, are damaged. This can happen if the spine is dislocated or fractured in a car accident. Spinal cord injuries can lead to paralysis and loss of feeling in the arms and legs.
Internal bleeding is a serious injury that can occur in a car accident. It happens when one of the body's organs is damaged and starts to bleed. Internal bleeding can happen anywhere in the body, but it's often difficult to spot because it doesn't usually cause any external bruising.
Symptoms of this type of injury include abdominal pain, chest pain, shortness of breath, and dizziness. If not treated promptly, internal bleeding can be fatal.
Drunk driving is a serious problem in the United States. It puts not only the driver at risk but also their passengers. If you notice that someone you know has been drinking, don't let them get behind the wheel. If you're in a car with a drunk driver, ask them to pull over and call a taxi or Uber. It could save your life.
If you’ve already suffered injury as a result of drunk driving, talk to an accident attorney right away. You may be entitled to compensation.