Tina was awarded over £4,300 for her whiplash injury after being involved in a car accident whilst waiting at a zebra crossing.
“While stationary, a car from behind shunted my car. The defendant’s air bags came out,” Sarah explains.
“A passer-by called the police, ambulance and fire brigade. My husband took me to the hospital on the same day, where my injuries were confirmed.”
“I am still suffering,” she says, months later.
After recent newspaper reports about fraudsters and low-speed car accidents, whiplash may not be taken seriously by some.
Yet it remains a common complaint, often leading to weeks and months of pain, and time off work.
One leading insurer says it’s the cause of 76% of all claims for bodily injury in the UK.
Whiplash is defined as a sprain of the neck, where the tendons and ligaments are stretched or torn by sudden forwards, backwards or sideways movement.
It’s common in urban traffic shunts, and while symptoms can take 6-12 hours to develop, they can keep getting worse for several days.
The symptoms and diagnosis
Symptoms include neck pain, muscle spasms, headaches, tenderness and limited movement.
One study used by the NHS found that 12% of sufferers still had problems more than six months later.
Though the average recovery time is 32 days, more serious injuries can bring on complications.
Unfortunately, anxiety and depression are not uncommon in those suffering prolonged pain, and these can affect your work life too.
Of 4000 whiplash claimants surveyed by the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers in 2012, almost 90% had been diagnosed by a doctor or other medical professional.
That’s despite 47% of them admitting to playing down their symptoms ‘so as not to make a fuss’.
In concluding the TSC report, Louise Ellman MP warned against dismissing whiplash.
“Many claims are genuine and relate to real injuries which can affect people for months or years,” she said.
“In the debate about how to reduce fraud and exaggeration, genuine claimants should not be demonised simply because their condition cannot be picked up on a scan.”
While a blow to the head from a fall, a flying ball or a fist can cause whiplash, it’s most common in car collisions.
The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents stresses the importance of restraints in your car.
Correctly adjusted, they should be as high as your head and as close as possible.
It will reduce the time it takes your head to initially contact the restraint, and increase the time your head is supported during an accident, says ROSPA.
Make a claim
If you’ve been injured and suspect your suffering from whiplash, it’s a sound idea to talk to a one of our representatives at Claim 3000 on 0333 355 3000.
Credit The Daily Mirror™