Head on crashes account for only 2% of vehicle crashes according to 2005 data. These crashes, however, account for more than 10% of all traffic fatalities. These accidents can be very hard to avoid in some cases. Because you’ll have a vehicle moving toward you, the amount of time that you have to react will be diminished and the consequences of not reacting in time and appropriately can be devastating.
Head on car crash injuries come from sudden deceleration, hitting fixed objects—such as the dashboard—during the collision and from objects flying around in the car during the crash, among other causes. The car may crumple, the passenger compartment may be crushed and the windshield may end up in pieces, causing severe lacerations. These types of crashes are so deadly, in part, because of the tremendous amount of force involved.
How They Happen
Head on crashes happen when someone crosses into the wrong lane, when they take go the wrong-way down an exit ramp or when they lose control of their vehicle. Drunk drivers frequently cause these types of crashes, as they cannot keep lucid enough to pay attention to their driving and oftentimes end up drifting across lanes without realizing it.
Spotting a driver coming straight for you can be difficult. It’s natural to hesitate when you see it, as it would seem that you’re misinterpreting what you’re seeing, in many cases. Just as the case with motorcyclists being hit, driver tend to not be looking for cars coming the wrong way and, because of that, they may not even notice them when they are. There are a lot of ways that very good, very attentive drivers can end up in a head on collision without having been negligent in any regard, simply because another driver isn’t controlling their vehicle.
One oddity of driving is that you tend to head wherever you’re looking. This makes head on situations particularly dangerous, as you’ll naturally be looking at the car coming at you and, thus, will unconsciously keep heading straight at it. A defensive driving course will give you tools including how to identify and use an escape route that may help you to avoid getting into one of these devastating crashes.
If a negligent driver has caused you to be involved in a head on collision, talk to an attorney about filing a lawsuit. That driver may owe you compensation for their negligence.