Vehicle Sideswipes: Just the Facts
Sideswipe accidents occur when two cars collide with each other side-by-side. We usually see this when one driver switches lanes and ends up sideswiping the car next to him/her. Even though sideswipe accidents can be relatively minor, they can sometimes cause the innocent driver to lose control and sustain serious bodily injury.
As with any car collision, a sideswipe accident can cause significant damage to the vehicles involved in the accident. Additionally, drivers and passengers can sustain serious injuries, especially if the vehicles ran off the road or into a median. One of the dangers of sideswipe accidents is that when the cars collide, they usually collide in places that are not protected by airbags, therefore leaving passengers more vulnerable to injury. The most common types of injuries sustained in sideswipe car crashes are head, neck, and back injuries, scrapes, and cuts on the face, arms, and legs, and broken bones. Even when airbags are available, the impact from the airbag has been known to cause serious injuries, burns, lacerations, and even death.
Of all the reported collisions in the United States, according to a study that was done by FARS (Fatality Analysis Reporting System) and GES (General Estimates System), 497,000 (8.6%) were sideswipe crashes. Of those, approximately 67,000 resulted in injury.