When people think of being rear-ended by another vehicle, they often think first of a minor fender-bender. However, these crashes can be more dangerous than many believe. Studies have indicated that rear-end collisions account for about 7 percent of traffic fatalities, and these crashes make up around 29 percent of car accidents of collisions overall. What serious injuries can result from a rear-end collision?

Head injuries

In a car, the vehicle components and any possessions in the car are quite close to drivers and passengers. When they experience the sudden jolt of a rear-end collision, their head can easily strike their steering wheel or dashboard, and objects in the car could injure them as they suddenly shift forward. Depending on the force of the crash, the brain injuries that result could be severe.

Whiplash and other neck injuries

Because the vehicle’s motion during a rear-end collision can cause the head to move suddenly, it can also cause neck strain due to that motion. Whiplash is a common result of rear-end car accidents and can, in some cases, lead to chronic pain or other long-term effects.


In a crash, any part of the body that strikes something or experiences compression can risk fractures. These fractures can include broken noses or skull fractures from the head hitting the steering wheel, compression fractures in the arms or legs and even fractures in the spinal column.

While rear-end collisions may seem minor, it can be important for people to seek medical attention after a crash. Prompt medical care allows doctors to diagnose these conditions early, document the condition of injured people and lay the foundation for both their recovery and potential legal action.