As anybody would tell you, accidents can’t be prevented. They happen at a moment’s notice and even if we know they are coming, one cannot always avoid the worst from happening.
In the case of whiplash, there’s not much that you can do. Most whiplash injuries occur as a result of a road traffic accident, so let’s focus on this. The reason people sustain whiplash after they are shunted by another vehicle or otherwise crash is because the seat belt secures the torso in place, but the neck is free to move according to the forces exerted on it. This causes the muscles, ligaments and tendons in the neck to be stretched and strained.
Preventing whiplash – is it even possible?
When it comes to preventing whiplash, the only real way to do so is to purchase a car with a well-rated head restraint, and a car that performs well in Euro NCAP results. A good head restraint is one that is multi-adjustable. Another way to prevent whiplash is to have your seat in a supportive position. A lot of people have their seat too far back or too far forwards, and are at risk of hitting their head on the steering wheel or sustaining facial injuries from their air bag deploying. A well-designed head restraint and good seat positioning is the best way to prevent whiplash, but this is no guarantee that you won’t sustain a whiplash injury.
Adjusting your head restraint
Adjusting your head restraint should be easy. Please refer to your vehicle owner’s guide to see how your individual head restraint works, as well as instructions for operation.
Generally speaking, your head restraint should be 5cm or less away from the back of your head and it should support the back of your head completely.
I’ve sustained whiplash. What should I do?
Visit your GP to ensure that they are aware of your injury. Your GP may recommend a course of treatment to help you recover. If your injury impacts your everyday and working life, you may wish to explore making a claim for financial compensation in order to recover your financial losses and get justice – you are legally entitled to this if you have suffered an injury as a result of somebody else’s actions or negligence.
Whiplash claims payout averages are around £3,000, for a moderate injury. An experienced whiplash solicitor will be able to offer you a more accurate estimate of what you can expect for your injury. To find an experienced solicitor, call Accident Advice Helpline on Freephone 0800 689 0500 or from your mobile on 0333 500 0993 to discuss your case with a claims advisor and find out more about the process along with the next steps.