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Seat Belt Injuries

Using a seat belt is the most effective way to prevent injury or death in an automobile collision. While it is undeniable that using a seat belt can save lives, it is unfortunate that the very devices which are meant to protect passengers in the event of an accident can often be the direct cause of serious and debilitating injuries.

If you or a loved one has been injured by a seat belt after a Connecticut auto accident, you may be entitled to compensation. You could recover damages for your medical expenses, pain and suffering, or other losses. If you think your injuries were caused by your seat belt, the attorneys at Jonathan Perkins Injury Lawyers can help you recover the compensation you deserve.

Common Seat Belt Injuries

During an accident, a seat belt restrains the body against several thousand pounds of pressure generated by the momentum of a crash. Because seat belts generally cross passengers across the chest and abdomen, several types of injuries to these areas are common, including:

  • Bone fractures
  • Bowel and bladder injury
  • Brain injury
  • Concussions
  • Contusions
  • Death
  • Disfigurement
  • Head injury
  • Internal organ damage
  • Paralysis
  • Paraplegia
  • Spinal cord injury

Following any kind of auto collision, it’s always a wise decision to visit your local doctor or physician and have him or her check your body for signs of injuries – including bruising and lacerations.

Symptoms of Seat Belt Injuries

As discussed above, seat belts can cause serious injuries to the body. However, it may take several days for injuries caused by safety belts to become apparent, and your injuries may be dependent on the type of seat belt used. If you experience any of the following symptoms, you may be more injured than you initially realized and should be sure to see your doctor.

Pain in the Chest, Neck and Legs

Pain in the chest, neck, and/or legs is an extremely common result of seat belt use during a car accident. Usually, this pain occurs because the seat belt locks during an accident, and a person’s body is forcefully pressed against the restraints. While this prevents the passenger from being thrown forward into a windshield, the pressure from the seat belt can also cause deep bruises, muscle strains, or cracked ribs. While you may be tempted to ignore these injuries, it is important to inform your doctor of any pain after an accident in order to rule out serious injury.

Stiff Neck

Whiplash is another common type of seat belt injury caused by the back-and-forth movement of the head during an accident. A person suffering from whiplash will notice that their neck is increasingly sore and difficult to move. Whiplash is a spinal injury, which can be serious if left untreated. While some whiplash injuries resolve on their own, others may result in lasting pain or stiffness.

Abdominal Pain and Bowel Problems

Pressure from a seat belt across the abdomen often causes internal injuries, including bleeding or damage to the intestines, colon, or urinary tract. Accident victims with intestinal injuries often suffer from nausea, vomiting, and fever. Blood in the urine or stools also indicates an internal injury and is a serious symptom that should not be ignored. Additionally, the accident victim’s stomach may be painful to the touch and feel tight or distended. Children are especially susceptible to abdominal injuries caused by seat belts because a vehicle’s safety restraints are designed for adult bodies and may sit too high on a child’s stomach in an accident.

In addition to damaging the intestines, seat belts can compress and damage the urinary system, including the bladder and kidneys. If you have abdominal pain, pain while urinating, or blood in the urine after an accident, this can indicate damage to the urinary system. Pain between the hips and ribs can be symptomatic of kidney damage, which can be fatal if left untreated.

If you or your child were wearing a seatbelt during an auto accident in Connecticut, be aware of any changes in bowel movements or urination which can indicate an internal injury. Be sure to have these symptoms checked by a physician who can either treat or rule out any potentially serious injuries caused by wearing a seat belt.


Weakness after an accident can be either generalized or focused on the limbs. Damage to the nerves in the spinal cord can cause weakness through one or both legs, or through the shoulders and arms. In contrast, generalized weakness or dizziness can indicate shock or internal damage caused by the seat belt injury.

Difficulty Breathing

Most seat belts cross across a car accident victim’s chest in order to keep the passenger from being thrown forward. The pressure from the seat belt can cause ribs to crack or break, making it physically difficult or painful to breathe. In addition, a seat belt may injure the heart and lungs, causing fluid to build up around the organs. A person suffering from these injuries may feel like they are suffocating or unable to breathe deeply. Any breathing problems should be immediately reported to your doctor to rule out serious internal injuries.

After you seek medical attention for any new or worsening injuries caused by a seat belt in a Connecticut auto accident, you should consider consulting a knowledgeable seat belt attorney like those at Jonathan Perkins Injury Lawyers to discuss a possible accident claim.

Need Help? Contact Our Attorneys Today.

If you or a loved one has suffered a seat belt injury after a Connecticut auto accident, you may be able to receive compensation for your injuries. At Jonathan Perkins Injury Lawyers, our team has decades of combined experience helping personal injury victims throughout Connecticut fight for their right to compensation after an accident. Our attorneys understand the pain suffered by you and your family, and are dedicated to helping you receive everything to which you are entitled.

To schedule a no-cost, no-obligation consultation with one of our Connecticut personal injury lawyers, call us toll-free at 800-PERKINS. Our compassionate and experienced intake team will collect some initial details about your accident, and then connect you to one of our lawyers – it’s that easy. Alternatively, simply complete the Free Case Evaluation form and one of our attorneys will contact you regarding your case.

Recovering after an accident can be draining physically, emotionally, and financially. At Jonathan Perkins Injury Lawyers, our attorneys will take your case on a contingency basis, meaning that we do not get paid unless you win — and we have won millions for our clients in successful verdicts and settlements. Contact Jonathan Perkins Injury Lawyers today to see what our attorneys can do for you!