Fender Benders, Whiplash and the Florida PIP Laws

An automobile need not be severely damaged for the person inside to sustain serious injuries . Even a fender bender can have serious physical consequences and it is not unusual for someone who gets into a car accident with just a few bruises to assume they are not injured. The damage may not be immediately apparent but even if the accident seemed minor it is important to make an appointment to get checked out by a CBP chiropractor to make sure there has been no injury to the musculoskeletal system.

One of the most common injuries in an auto accident is whiplash. This term refers to the motion that happens to the head and neck during the accident, whipping backwards and forwards with a sharp snapping action like that of the end of a bull-whip. Many issues can stem from whiplash, such as disc herniation, postural misalignment and joint dysfunction. When whiplash occurs, the muscles and ligaments can tear or become loose, restricting range of movement and increasing pain.

About half of all whiplash injuries occur between speeds of 6-12 mph. Most modern vehicles can sustain 10 –12 mph impacts with little or no visible damage. In recent crash tests conducted by the Spine Research Institute of San Diego, a Honda Accord was rear-ended at 16 mph with no visible damage. According to insurance industry logic, if there is no car damage, there can be no injury. Nothing could be further from the truth. Recent rear-end crash studies using live volunteers found the threshold for whiplash injury was 3-5 mph. This demonstrates, much to the insurance industry’s dismay, that you can indeed be injured without vehicle damage.

There is never a good time to be injured in an automobile accident. Remember, there is often a lag in the onset of symptoms following an automobile accident. You can lose considerable insurance coverage if you wait more than 14 days. Under Florida’s Personal Injury Protection law or PIP law you must initiate treatment within 14 days or you will forfeit your right for medical treatment under PIP. Did you know there are approximately three million whiplash injuries each year. About 59% (1.7 million people) will not fully recover and 10% (300,000 people) will be permanently disabled? Dr. Chait and his professional staff at Chait Chiropractic Center will work diligently in an effort to restore your health and ease your mind during this stressful time. Dealing with your Florida auto insurance can be overwhelming. Chait Chiropractic Center will help you navigate through this maze of insurance issues that you may be faced with. We are a provider for all Florida automobile insurance carriers. Florida is a no-fault state and your automobile insurance covers care in our office. Call us today at 941-371-1070 to schedule your consultation.

Remember the 5 most dangerous words: Maybe it will go away.

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