The nature of physics can be deadly in the “right” (or wrong) circumstance.

Take an auto accident, for instance. The rules and laws of physics tell us that auto accidents of any kind can do some damage to the human body, as human flesh is more pliable and not as strong as the metal of the automobile. When a car is traveling at a certain speed, the force imposed on objects or other cars goes up by an exponential number based on the increase of speeds.

For example, if a car hits a parked car or a wall at 25 miles per hour, it will exert a certain amount of force on the wall and back against the car and all human bodies in the car. Increase the speed by double to 50 mph, and the force exerted multiplies by four. If the speed is three times higher, 75 mph, the force exerted is nine times greater. And when you have exponential increases in force, that means exponential levels of stress on organs, muscles and bones.

When you change a head-on collision from a car colliding with a wall to two cars in motion, you have extreme levels of force. Although the engine area serves as a crumple zone that absorbs much of the kinetic energy and force of the impact, the human body will also take a large amount of impact when the vehicle (and the body by extension) goes from 40 or 60 mph to zero in a second or less.

As you might imagine, when the human body stops so quickly and runs into steering wheels, dashboards, windshields or other objects as a result of a head-on collision, the damage to the body can be severe.

In fact, while head-on collisions only account for less than 5 percent of all crashes in the U.S., they can account for a fatality rate that is five times higher than the accident rate. In 2005 for example, head-on collisions were 2 percent of all auto crashes, yet those accounted for more than 10 percent of all accident-related deaths.

Did you know that three-fourths of head-on collisions occur on non-urban, two-lane, undivided roadways? That may not surprise you, but this next fact might.

You might think that with so many head-on collisions occurring on undivided, two-lane roadways, the next intuitive conclusion is that many of those collisions were caused by a vehicle passing another vehicle. But in fact, less than 5 percent of head-on collisions are due to a vehicle passing another. So what are some of the more common reasons for these crashes?

One common thread among these causes are various distractions or negative influences on the driver. A key one is general distracted driving, such a driver texting or talking on a cell phone, playing with the stereo, eating or some other activity that takes eyes off the road for a short time.

A common cause for these collisions is a driver who goes around a curve too fast, and then fails to correct back into its own lane. As you also might expect, alcohol or drug use may also play a significant role in a head-on collision. There are also times, especially on these rural roads, when a driver will fall asleep at the wheel and stray into oncoming traffic.

### Not a Simple Solution

When you know the various ways that a head-on collision can occur and the numerous potential factors that contribute to such a crash, it is more difficult that it looks to determine liability and responsibility. While it may look obvious when one car is in an oncoming traffic lane, it is still important to have the accident scene fully investigated.

With all of the potential injury and damage, there can be a lot of evidence available to determine any criminal or civil violations as well as any vehicular or roadway defects before determining any driver error. To ensure that your rights are protected in such an incident, you will need a quality personal-injury attorney in Memphis to ensure a fair, independent accident investigation takes place so all the facts of your head-on collision are revealed.

An effective accident investigation will involve gathering evidence at the scene, collecting statements from drivers, passengers and witnesses, gathering facts from a police report, and conducting physics and mathematical equations to determine vehicular speeds, force of impact and to deconstruct the cars’ behaviors before, during and after the crash.

Head-on collisions can be devastating to victims and families because of the dangers level of fatalities connected to such crashes. In such a case, it is always vital to first ensure the health and safety of all involved in the crash, then ensure that you legal rights are protected with a free consultation with a Memphis personal-injury attorney who knows how to investigate head-on collisions and make sure that all the facts are on the table so proper liability can be determined. Contact us today.