Why Are Wrist Fractures a Common Car Accident Injury?

 Posted on January 23, 2024 in Auto Accidents

Blog ImageOne of the most common car accident injuries is wrist fractures. These fractures occur when one or more of the bones in the wrist crack or break. They can range in severity from minor hairline fractures to more complex and severe injuries. While some may believe that a fractured wrist is a minor injury, many of these injuries are painful and can cause long-term medical and financial issues. An Illinois personal injury lawyer can determine the financial compensation the injured person may be entitled to for the losses the wrist fracture causes.

The following is a brief overview of why this is such a common injury.

Impact Forces

Car accidents involve sudden and powerful forces. When a vehicle smashes into another object or comes to a sudden stop, the occupants inside the car may be thrown forward or sideways. This can result in their wrists hitting the steering wheel, dashboard, or other hard surfaces with considerable force, leading to wrist fractures.

Hand Positioning

Many drivers instinctively grip the steering wheel during an accident to maintain vehicle control. Unfortunately, this can put significant strain on the wrists as they absorb the impact. Positioning the hands on the wheel at the time of the collision can directly influence the likelihood and severity of wrist injuries.

Airbag Deployment

While airbags are designed to save lives, their deployment can be forceful and sudden, resulting in injuries. When an airbag inflates, it can hit an occupant's wrists if their hands are positioned in a way that makes contact with the steering wheel. This can result in wrist fractures despite the airbag's overall safety benefits.

Side-Impact Collisions

Side-impact collisions, also known as T-bone accidents, can be hazardous for the wrists. When a car is struck from the side, the force can cause the driver or passengers to brace against the impact, leading to wrist injuries as they try to shield themselves from harm.

Types of Fractures

The type of wrist fracture a person suffers can also determine how fast or slow healing will take place. The most common types include:

  • Colles fracture – This type of fracture involves a break in the distal radius bone (the larger of the forearm bones). They usually occur when the person extends their arm to brace for the crash impact. This force causes the wrist to bend backward.

  • Smith’s fracture – This fracture also involves the distal radius, but the wrist is bent forward in this type of fracture.

  • Scaphoid fracture – The scaphoid bone is one of the small bones located near the base of the thumb in the wrist. This small bone plays an important role in the stability and movement of the wrist. This type of fracture usually occurs when the hand hits a hard surface, such as the steering wheel, in a crash.

  • Barton’s fracture – These are the most severe wrist fractures. Along with a break in the distal radius, Barton’s fracture includes the dislocation of one of the two joints in the wrist. In most of these breaks, surgery is required as part of the medical treatment needed.

Contact a Kane County, IL Car Accident Lawyer if You Have Been Injured

Have you or a loved one suffered a wrist fracture injury in a crash caused by another driver? Do not hesitate to call Kinnally Flaherty Krentz Loran Hodge & Masur P.C. to speak with one of our Aurora, IL car accident attorneys to find out what legal recourse you may have for your medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses you may have suffered. Call 630-907-0909 to schedule a free case evaluation.

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