Motor vehicle accident lawyer explains how to claim compensation for a car accident caused when a driver is blinded by the sun causing whiplash neck injuries, a herniated cervical spine, concussion and psychological injury
Car Accident Victim Question
I was returning from work in Blackpool driving along a main road (a residential road) close to where I live in Lytham St Annes on the Fylde coast. I know this road well and the speed limit is 30 mph.
The sun was low in the sky and as I about to pass a side road I noticed a car approach, pause and then accelerate across the give way sign attempting to turn right across my path. I slammed on my brakes, but it was too late and both our vehicles collided.
The driver of the other car got out and apologised profusely explaining that the sun was in his eyes when he looked up in my direction and had not noticed my presence. I appreciate that the winter sun can be quite blinding.
We exchanged details and also those of a pedestrian who had witnessed the accident.
My car was badly damaged, but I managed to get it home which was less than a mile away.
When our cars collided I banged my head on the side window of my car so my head was a little sore.
Later that day I started to experience very bad headaches and my neck and back stiffened up.
I decided to go to hospital and I was diagnosed with concussion and whiplash. X-rays were taken and I was told that the force of the collision from the side had caused a slight herniation of one of my cervical discs.
The following day – I contacted the other driver on his mobile who now appears to have changed his story and said that even though he was blinded by the sun the accident was my fault as I was speeding.
I am extremely annoyed and would like to claim compensation for my neck injuries, herniated disc and concussion together with the repair expense for my vehicle. How can I go about this and what are my chances of success given that he seems to have changed his version of events?
Motor Vehicle Accident Solicitor Response
It is quite clear that the other driver will be found at fault for your accident. Even in his modified version of events he is accepting that he was blinded by the sun and that he must give way to traffic on a main road.
In any event – you have the details of an independent witness who can verify exactly how the accident happened and that you were not speeding.
I anticipate that once the other driver’s motor insurer is contacted liability will be conceded.
The fact that the symptoms of your injuries did not present themselves immediately following the RTA is quite common. Shock of an accident will mask the initial symptoms, which typically first present themselves a few hours after a motor accident.
In any event – you went to hospital and all of your injuries have been diagnosed and properly recorded. The nature of your injuries (whiplash neck injury, a herniated cervical disc and concussion) are entirely consistent with the mechanics of a side on collision.
You should keep a diary on a daily basis of all of your symptoms – both physical and psychological. Quite often with neck injuries symptoms can be deferred to the shoulder and even the hands (pins and needles).
Also – road traffic accidents in which you see a vehicle approach and are powerless to prevent a collision can cause psychological damage, such as shock, travel anxiety, sleepless nights, dwelling on accident events and avoidance of certain situations. In the worst cases this psychological injury can develop into post-traumatic stress disorder.
Be mindful of any symptoms you have and report them to your GP.
The cost of repair of your vehicle can be claimed from the motor insure of the driver at fault as can other expenses and financial losses you might incur, such as: lost income for any time off work, medical expenses (for painkillers, etc.), travel expenses to the hospital and GP, a sum for help in the home provided by friends and family members, etc.
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