The “Bottom Line” regarding “Whiplash Crash Facts” (this information was accumulated during 2004 – - and includes all the previous years) are as follows:
THERE ARE 8 ABSOLUTE FACTS REGARDING THAT WHICH IS TODAY IDENTIFIED AS A “WHIPLASH” INJURY. THEY ARE AS FOLLOWS:
#1. The “Threshold” for cervical spine soft tissue injury becomes a reality at 5 MPH.
#2. Most injuries occur at speeds below 12 MPH.
#3. Crashed cars can often withstand collision speeds of 10 MPH (some even more) without sustaining damage. (THUS: The concept of “No Property Damage – No Cash” has absolutely been invalidated)!
#4. A delay in the onset of symptoms has been found to be the “Norm” rather than the “Exception”.
#5. Mild traumatic brain injury can be the result of a Whiplash -Type injury. (These symptoms are often referred to as, “Post Concussion Syndrome”).
#6. Up to 10% of victims of “Whiplash” become totally disabled !
#7. Of the 31 important whiplash studies since 1956 (19 of them executed since 1990) regarding patients from all vectors of motor vehicle accident collision impacts (be they rear, frontal, or side) it was found that “over 60% of them” needed long-term medical follow-up.
#8. In 2003 several million Americans suffered a “Whiplash-Type” injury. This figure flows up into the stratosphere each and ever day at an alarming rate of speed!
TIME NEEDED TO RECOVER
Studies have proved that 45% of the victims remained symptomatic at 12 weeks and 25% remained symptomatic at 6 months. The most minor cases needed at least 8 weeks to recover. The time needed to stabilize in the more severe cases took 17 weeks. THUS: The written (and often declared) notion that “Whiplash Injuries Heal In 6 To 8 Weeks” is just not true !
CHILDREN AND THE “WHIPLASH-TYPE” INJURY:
Youngsters who have had Whiplash-Type injuries display sleep disturbances and nightmares, difficulties in talking to parents and friends, mood disturbances, poor academic performance and specific fears when it came to impact related play. ANOTHER SERIOUS CONCLUSION: Children who have been involved in motor vehicle accidents are often neglected as having had “Any various types of injury“, when in actuality, they suffer from the same symptoms as adults. As a matter of fact, they’re at a greater risk for damages – - especially when it comes to “WHIPLASH” !
THE FIVE MOST COMMON MYTHS AS APPLIED TO “WHIPLASH”
#1. Low speed impact crashes don’t cause injuries. #2. Injuries heal in 6 to 12 weeks. #3. A patients pre-injury psychological makeup affects recovery.#4. The greater the vehicle damage the greater the occupant injury.#5. An “Accident Re-Constructionist” can predict injury potential. All five of these “Conclusions” have been proved to be totally incorrect !
THREE SOLID “INJURY-CRASH-FACTS”
#1. Most injuries occur at speeds below 12 MPH.#2. Rear-end impacts of 6 MPH to 12 MPH cause the most injuries. #3. Between 1 and 2 years (post-injury) 22% of many patient’s conditions have not returned to “Normal”.
NINE ABSOLUTELY CORRECT WHIPLASH “RISK-FACTORS”
#1. DEGENERATIVE DISEASE: Headaches and/or neck injury pain (for whatever reasons) prior to the crash.
#2. PRE-EXISTING HEALTH PROBLEMS: These can positively lead to even greater pain. (For example: A solid Arthritis situation will always lead to the severity of the injury and the pain).
#3. VEHICLE SIZE: Even if both are about the same size an 8 MPH impact produces two times the force of gravity. If one is greater than the size of another the Gravity-Force becomes monumental!
#4. HEADREST POSITION: The injury becomes much worse if it’s too far away. It must be close enough to catch the head in time – - or about 2 inches. (Over 98% of the headrests are more than 2 inches from the head).
#5. POSITION OF HEAD AT IMPACT: If not positively straight (it rarely is) all the G Forces are localized to one side of the spine, substantially increasing the severity of injuries.
#6. AGE: How old one is plays a crucial role regarding a “Whiplash-Type” of injury. Why? Because as the body becomes older, ligaments become less pliable, muscles are weaker and less flexible plus there’s a decreased range of motion.
#7. WOMEN AND CHILDREN: They injure more seriously than men because they have smaller necks. They may also be too close to the steering wheel, airbag and/or are wearing an improper fitting shoulder harness.
#8. NON-USE OF: The motor vehicle’s shoulder harness.
#9. FAILURE TO WEAR A SEATBELT !
YOU MUST NEVER FORGET TO DOUBLE CHECK YOUR “MEDICAL PAYMENTS” COVERAGE
YOU MUST READ AND UNDERSTAND ALL THERE IS TO KNOW ABOUT YOUR MOTOR VEHICLE INSURANCE “MEDICAL PAYMENTS” COVERAGE: This coverage pays all Medical (and very often even funeral expenses) for you, your spouse and even relatives living in your home, and/or others who are injured while operating your motor vehicle with your permission.
HERE’S A “BIGGIE” THAT MANY PEOPLE ARE NOT AWARE OF: You and your resident family members may also be covered as pedestrians regarding the payment of your medical bills – - should you have been struck and injured by a motor vehicle.
PLUS: WHEN IT COMES TO YOUR MOTOR VEHICLES “MEDICAL PAYMENTS” COVERAGE – - HERE ARE TWO HUGE FACTS THAT (RARELY ARE BUT) MUST BE CHECKED OUT: #1. You’re usually paid (regardless of who was at fault for the accident) up to the limit of the coverage you’ve selected. #2. The coverage very often extends to expenses incurred – - within the first three years of the accident !
DISCLAIMER: This article BACKGROUND INFORMATION REGARDING THE MOTOR VEHICLE ACCIDENT “WHIPLASH-TYPE” INJURY – - AS OF LATE 2004 is intended for information only. It is to help readers understand the motor vehicle accident claim process. Neither Dan Baldyga nor LAWGURU.COM make any guarantee of any kind whatsoever; NOR do they purport to engage in in rendering any professional or legal service; NOR to substitute for a lawyer, an insurance adjuster, or claims consultant, or the like. Whenever such help is desired it is THE INDIVIDUALS RESPONSIBILITY to obtain such services.
Dan Baldygas third and latest book AUTO ACCIDENT PERSONAL INJURY INSURANCE CLAIM (How To Evaluate And Settle Your Loss) found on the internet at http://www.caraccidentclaims.com or http://www.autoaccidentclaims.com. This book tells one how they should successfully handle a motor vehicle accident claim so they won’t be taken advantage of. It also contains BASE (The Baldyga Auto Accident Settlement Evaluation Formula). THE BASE FORMULA explains how to determine the value of the “Pain and Suffering” each person endued – - because of their personal injury.
Copyright (c) 2004 By Daniel G. Baldyga. All Rights Reserved
Dan Baldyga has a lifetime of experience in the field of motor vehicle accidents, personal injury and compensation. From 1951 thru 1955 he worked his way through college employed by a Springfield, Massachusetts detective agency, where his assignments included insurance fraud, missing persons, financial and background investigations and undercover operations. He specialized in representing major New England insurance companies, for whom he collected evidence in the inquiry of automobile accidents.
Upon graduation from American International College in 1955, where he had a scholarship and played varsity football quarterback for 4 years, Baldyga was drafted into the United States Navy where he was assigned to a “Special Unit” in Criminal Investigations. His primary duty was to travel throughout the Midwest, determining negligence and bringing to a conclusion those accident cases involving government motor vehicles. After a year he was transferred to the Orient where he worked on serious and highly complicated criminal cases.
In 1958 after serving in the Navy, he entered the world of insurance claims, where he began as an Adjuster, was promoted to Supervisor, and then to Claims Manager for 35 years. He then spent another five years of his career assisting company attorneys at court trials.
In 1968, Baldyga wrote the ground-breaking HOW TO SETTLE YOUR OWN INSURANCE CLAIM, published by Macmillan. This revolutionary concept created a heated debate within both the insurance and legal industries — because it revealed, the deep secrets surrounding the settlement of motor vehicle accident claims. This had never been done before!
Baldyga appeared on over 100 regional and national television and radio talk shows throughout the United States including the Mike Douglas Show where he made the observation, “Insurance is an ultra-conservative industry that breeds unimaginative, narrow minded men”. It took a wealth of twisting and turning to dodge the bullets fired at him from both the insurance industry and his Home Office. His innovative book sold over 200,000 copies.
His later publications also include the 1983 novel A SAILOR REMEMBERS and his second “How To” insurance claim book, SECRETS NEVER TOLD was released in 1998. Over the past decade his insurance claim articles have been published in dozens of national magazines, newsletters and e-zines reaching millions of readers.
Upon his retirement, Baldyga decided that it was time to publish the definitive guide concerning motor vehicle accident personal injury claims.
After examining mountains of statistics and confidential reports, he has created BASE (The Baldyga Auto Accident Settlement Evaluation Formula). Experts have called this personal injury evaluation method “Amazing” and “Revolutionary.” THE BASE FORMULA is ingenious, yet matter-of-fact, simple, yet accurate, and eliminates the mystery of how to place a monetary value on “Pain and Suffering” !
His new book, which goes into specific detail regarding The BASE Formula, AUTO ACCIDENT PERSONAL INJURY INSURANCE CLAIM (How To Evaluate And Settle Your Loss) can be found on the internet at either of his 2 his web sites: http://www.caraccidentclaims.com OR http://www.autoaccidentclaims.com
Once again Dan Baldyga has broken new ground in the normally dormant, unchanging landscape of motor vehicle accident insurance claims!