Ejection from Vehicles in Car Accidents

Understanding the Mechanism of Injury

In order to understand the types of injuries that our clients suffer, it is critical that we understand the mechanism of injury that occurred as a result of the car accident. The mechanism of injury is an explanation of what happened to our client as a result of a certain type of impact. One of the most straightforward but dangerous, if not deadly, types of mechanisms of injury is an ejection from a vehicle.

Being thrown from the car (ejection) is one of the likely causes of severe injury and death. Ejection from vehicles in an accident generally does not show a cause-specific type of injury. When a person is ejected from a vehicle in an accident, almost any part of the body area or multiple parts of the body may be injured.

Serious head injuries are frequent injuries in car accidents causing an ejection. This occurs when a person ejected from a vehicle strikes the ground or when his own vehicle or another vehicle rolls over the person.

The human body cannot withstand these tremendous forces. Craniofacial trauma and internal injuries to the chest and abdominal contents are commonplace. In the past, most persons thrown from cars were ejected through doors that had opened during the crash. In older vehicles, the twisting of the body frame, occupant impact against a door, bending of the vehicle in a horizontal plane, local impact deformation of the vehicle structures in the area of the door latch all contributed to the opening of the door.

In newer model cars the latch-striker mechanism that holds the door closed has been improved. Now more often we are seeing injured persons who were ejected through windows. Especially in rollover collisions, the glass is broken and the occupant is partially or completely ejected. The injury patterns of injuries are not necessarily different from those seen previously when ejection was through doors. Even in the newer models, an accidental door opening is still a problem in rollover collisions. It happens sometimes when the outer door button is depressed by the ground or road debris as the vehicle rolls over. This can be prevented, of course, by locking the door from the inside to prevent activation of the latch mechanism from outside.


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