A crush injury is an incredibly traumatic and life-threatening injury that can have lasting repercussions for victims and their families. This type of injury is common in serious motor vehicle collisions, workplace accidents, and other incidents where a person is at-risk of being pinned between two hard objects.
If you were the victim of a crush injury, you need a personal injury attorney who has experience handling catastrophic injury claims. Victims who suffer from these devastating injuries often face unique medical complications and serious financial strain. Abels and Annes has been handling serious personal injuries for over 30 years. We have the experience and resources necessary to take on these cases and to ensure that our clients get the compensation they desperately need.
What is a Crush Injury?
A crush injury refers to a type of injury that occurs when some part of a person’s body is crushed by an object or crushed between two objects.
The American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) defines a crush injury as a type of injury that occurs when an object causes major compression to a part of the body that results in internal and external damage to the body’s structures. This can include damage to the skin, bones, nerves, muscles, and ligaments. The ACEP also states that most crush injuries take place on a person’s extremities: the arms, hands, legs, and feet. Of course, one can also crush their entire torso.
According to the same study, 75% of crush injuries affect the feet or legs. Another 15% affect the arms and hands. And only 10% of crush injuries affect the torso.
Torso crush injuries can be especially catastrophic since it puts the organs at risk of serious damage. In worst case scenarios, extreme force to the torso can also cause immediate death.
Incidents that Commonly Cause Crush Injuries
Conventionally, a crush injury takes place when a person’s body or body part is stuck under something or in between two objects. This can occur when something falls onto a person, such as in a workplace accident, or during a motor vehicle accident when someone is crushed by a mangled vehicle.
Car and Truck Accidents
Car accidents involving two passenger vehicles and those involving a semi-truck can both easily create enough force to cause a crush injury. As a vehicle collides with another vehicle, a semi truck trailer, a guardrail, or any other hard object, the metal around the passenger twists and folds in ways that can easily crush a person. This compression of the vehicle often crushes a passenger’s legs or feet, arms or hands, or their whole torso.
For example, if you were to be involved in a head-on collision, the front of your vehicle may crush in on itself. And in the process, it may pin your legs between the dashboard and the seat.
Truck accidents that involve passenger vehicles usually involve more force. They therefore create optimal conditions for a crushing injury. Because of their size and weight, the impact from a truck accident can easily crush a car strictly from contact. Or it may cause a car to roll over and crush downward or push the vehicle off the road into a tree.
In motorcycle accidents, the most common crush injury occurs in the lower extremities. This occurs when a car or truck strikes the motorcycle from the side, crushing the rider’s leg in the process.
Another common way that motorcycle riders suffer crush injuries is from being pinned underneath their motorcycle after a collision.
Motorcycle riders and their passengers are also at risk of crushing injuries if the bike lands on top of one of them during impact. These types of situations can be very serious and may cause severe injuries.
A crushing injury can also occur in a bicycle accident. Just like with a motorcycle rider, a cyclist is at risk of being crushed when they are hit by a car. This can occur if the bike rider gets stuck under the vehicle or if they are pinned up against another object (such as a vehicle, tree, or fence).
Cyclists don’t experience crushing injuries as commonly as motorcyclists because a bicycle isn’t heavy enough to cause damage or truly pin them down. However, crushing injuries can and do happen to cyclists, especially in congested areas like downtown and midtown.
Like cyclists, pedestrians can be injured in crushing incidents if they are struck and pinned against another object. Pedestrians may also be knocked down and crushed by the vehicle that hit them.
Pedestrian crush injuries can be especially lethal since people commuting on foot have no protection from the impact. If a person is pinned under a vehicle or in between a vehicle and some object like a wall, their chances of severe injury or death are high.
Workplace and Construction Site Incidents
Crushing injuries are especially common at some workplaces and on construction sites. If the property or workplace isn’t well maintained, safety regulations are being ignored, or other precautions were overlooked, a structural collapse could occur.
A collapse of a ceiling or wall could result in the victim being pinned under rubble and severely injured. Crush injuries can also occur when a heavy piece of equipment falls, something tips over, or a worker gets pinned by a vehicle or machinery.
The Devastating Effects of a Crush Injury
Crushing injuries are usually not a single injury. Instead, they are a grouping of various injuries caused by a part of the body or the torso being crushed. This can mean a victim might have a few serious injuries and a plethora of minor injuries all from one incident.
For example, if a person is crushed in their car after a serious rollover accident, they may have a herniated disc in their spine and a broken rib that pierced part of their lung. These very serious injuries could also be accompanied by lacerations, bruising, and torn muscles.
Depending on the severity of the crush injury, a person may suffer a lifetime of pain and difficulties. Or they may recover in a few months and never suffer another consequence of the injury again. Injuries sustained vary from one personal injury incident to another.
One common devastating effect of crush injuries is loss of use of a limb, such as the arm or leg. When a person loses the ability to walk or use one of their arms, their life will be altered forever.
Common Consequences of Crush Injuries
- Broken or fractured bones
- Shattered bones
- Severe soft tissue damage
- Nerve damage
- Internal injuries (bleeding and organ damage)
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Wrongful death
On top of all the injuries listed above, crush injuries also often result in medical complications. Complications associated with crush injuries can make already severe injuries more devastating and burdensome.
“Compartment syndrome” or “crush injury syndrome” is the most common type of complication associated with crush injuries. Blood and other bodily fluids accumulate in an area and prevent proper blood flow to organs and tissues. This is an emergency, life-threatening situation that requires immediate medical attention. If not treated right away, the condition can result in death.
Crush Injury Victims Deserve Full Compensation
Crush injuries usually require extensive and ongoing medical care and support. Because of this, victims of crush injuries need reasonable compensation so they can pay their bills and support their loved ones.
If the negligent actions of another party caused your crush injury, you may be able to file a personal injury claim to hold them accountable for their actions.
Hiring a skilled Phoenix attorney will be a massive benefit to your crush injury case. Your personal injury attorney will put together a strong case, establish liability, and prove that the negligent party’s actions resulted in your damages.
If you were injured because of someone else’s negligence, let Abels & Annes help you recover compensation. You may be entitled to damages for costs incurred such as:
- Medical bills, as in emergency room fees, doctor visits, surgeries, physical therapy, and other medical costs
- Past and future lost wages from missed work
- Pain and suffering based on a lost quality of life and the severity of your injuries
- Wrongful death damages, if your loved one was killed from a crushing incident
An experienced Phoenix personal injury attorney can help you recover the damages you deserve so you can focus on your recovery and well-being.
Hire Crush Injury Lawyer Abels & Annes, Serving Phoenix and Greater Maricopa County
If you or someone you love has been the victim of a crushing injury, you’ll want the best legal representation possible on your side.
We know that the accident, injuries, and fallout has been devastating for you and your family, and we’re here to help.
For more information or a free case evaluation, please contact us online or by calling us at 602-819-5191.