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What Speed Do Most Car Accidents Happen At?

Speed plays a significant role in car accident injuries. Every year, countless people are injured or killed in motor vehicle collisions, often because of excessive speed. While crashes can occur at any speed, most of these devastating incidents happen at higher rates of speed than many people realize.

Our team at Impact Medical Zephyrhills examines the link between speed and car accident injuries, discussing how specific speeds increase the risk of injury to those involved.

What Speed Do Most Accidents Happen At?

Car accidents are one of the leading causes of injury and death worldwide. While there are many factors that contribute to car accidents, speed is often cited as a major culprit. But at what speed do most car accidents happen? According to research, most car accidents occur at speeds below 40 mph.

While high-speed collisions can certainly be dangerous and result in severe injuries, it’s the more common low-speed crashes that cause most injuries on the road. In fact, studies have shown that whiplash injuries are more likely to occur in rear-end collisions involving speeds as low as 10-15 mph. This is because even at these relatively slow speeds, the force of impact can cause significant damage to soft tissues like muscles and ligaments in the neck and back.

Of course, this doesn’t mean that drivers should feel safe driving above 40 mph!

Common Injuries Caused by Low-Speed Accidents

Low-speed accidents may not seem as severe as high-speed collisions, but they still carry the risk of causing serious injuries. Even if a vehicle is traveling at a slow speed, the impact can create enough force to cause significant harm to the occupants inside the car. Some common injuries that can occur in low-speed accidents include whiplash, concussions, and broken bones.


Whiplash occurs when your neck and head jerk forward and then snap back suddenly due to the impact of a collision. Even at low speeds, this sudden motion can strain or tear muscles and ligaments in your neck, causing pain and stiffness. Other soft tissue injuries such as bruises or contusions may also occur.


Concussions are a common injury that can occur during low-speed car accidents. While many people associate concussions with high-impact sports like football or hockey, they can also be caused by even minor collisions. Concussions happen when the brain is shaken inside the skull, causing damage to brain cells, and potentially leading to long-term cognitive problems.

Even if you were not seriously injured in a low-speed car accident, it’s important to seek medical attention if you experience any symptoms of a concussion.

These may include:

  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Sensitivity to light or noise
  • Difficulty concentrating or remembering things.

Your doctor will likely order imaging tests such as an MRI or CT scan of your brain to evaluate any potential damage.

Broken Bones

Broken bones in a low-speed car accident may seem unlikely, but they can happen. Even when the collision is at a lower speed, the force can still cause serious injuries that are not immediately apparent. Broken bones are among the most common types of injuries sustained in car accidents, and they can have long-lasting effects on victims.

A broken bone can cause significant pain and discomfort, and it may take weeks or even months to fully heal. Depending on the severity of the break, surgery may be required to set the bone properly. In some cases, physical therapy may also be necessary to help restore strength and mobility after the injury has healed. Yes, even in a 40 mph or less accident!

Recovery From Low-Speed Accidents

Being involved in a car accident, no matter how minor it may seem, can be a traumatic experience. Even low-speed collisions can cause significant physical and emotional damage that can affect you for months or even years after the incident. However, it’s important to take the necessary steps to recover both physically and mentally to get back on track.

Seek medical attention immediately after the accident. Don’t brush off any pain or discomfort as minor injuries could escalate if left untreated. Even if you don’t feel any immediate pain, schedule an appointment with your doctor for a thorough assessment. Follow all medical advice given to ensure proper healing and recovery time.

Don’t hesitate to seek support from family and friends during this difficult time. Car accidents can leave emotional scars that need healing just as much as physical ones do.

Post-Accident Healing Made Easier

The healing process after an accident can be difficult, but it is not impossible. With the help of our experienced team at Impact Medical Zephyrhills, patients are able to get back on their feet and reclaim their lives through chiropractic care, physical therapy, rehabilitation, and more.

Contact us to schedule an appointment today; (813) 706-5156!