As car accident lawyers, we here at Armstrong Lee & Baker LLP have witnessed a myriad of injuries stemming from accidents, including those attributable to seat belts. While it’s indisputable that seat belts save lives, regrettably, they can also worsen injuries in certain circumstances.

seat belt injuries

Common Injuries Seat Belts Cause

Again, there’s no debate regarding the effectiveness of seat belts. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), more than 90% of Americans used them in 2023. The NHTSA estimates seat belts save about 15,000 lives yearly. 

Even though seat belts prevent deaths, they can also damage parts of the body. They can lead to several different injuries, including blunt force injuries and a group of injuries known as “seat belt syndrome.” 

Blunt force injuries occur when the seat belt restrains the body during a collision, causing trauma to the chest, abdomen, or shoulders. These injuries can range from bruises and contusions to more severe internal injuries such as rib fractures, organ damage, or spinal injuries.

Seat belt syndrome refers to a specific pattern of injuries resulting from using a seat belt during an accident. This syndrome often involves injuries to the abdomen, commonly known as a “seat belt sign,” which appears as bruising or abrasions across the lap and torso areas. In severe cases, seat belt syndrome can lead to internal injuries such as bowel perforation or spinal cord injuries.

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Can You Sue for Seat Belt Injuries?

When you seek compensation for car accident injuries, you should consider all your injuries, including those caused by seat belts. You should have a prompt diagnosis of your injuries to present to the liable driver’s insurance company to prove how much compensation you deserve. 

Your car accident attorney will likely begin with an insurance claim with the at-fault driver’s provider. If the insurer tries to dispute your seat belt injuries or the severity of your losses, your lawyer can provide evidence of the extent of your injuries, the necessary treatment, and other effects. 

Through the process, you can seek compensation for the following regarding seat belt injuries:

  • Medical expenses
  • Lost wages from missing work
  • Pain and suffering
  • Permanent disability

If an insurance company refuses to offer a fair settlement, your lawyer can escalate the case by filing a lawsuit in civil court against the negligent driver. Again, the driver who caused your crash should be responsible for all your injuries, including those from seat belt trauma.

How a Houston Car Accident Attorney Can Help

An experienced car accident lawyer with Armstrong Lee & Baker LLP will be ready to represent you if a seat belt causes additional injuries in a collision. We hold negligent drivers accountable for all your injuries – including seat belt injuries.

If you would like more information or to schedule a free consultation, please don’t hesitate to use our online form.

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Scott Armstrong obtains remarkable results for his clients.  He has successfully tried numerous cases to favorable verdicts and reached significant settlements on his clients’ behalf.  In the process, he has recovered millions for his clients.