Crushing Injuries

Crushing injuries are incredibly painful and often more serious than they appear initially. That’s because a serious crush injury sets off a dangerous chain of events that may cause life-threatening complications. These injuries often result in permanent impairment, disability, or chronic pain.

Understanding more about crushing injuries can help you be better prepared to navigate a personal injury claim. 

Overview of Crushing Injuries

Overview of Crushing Injuries

Crush injuries happen when part of the body is compressed for an extended period of time or subjected to significant compressive force.

The compression causes trauma to the nerves, muscles, and soft tissue. Additional trauma is very common when the pressure is relieved, and the damaged tissue swells.

Types of Crushing Injuries

Crushing accidents cause a range of immediate injuries to the muscles, ligaments, tendons, nerves, and even bones and organs. 

Comminuted Fractures

Comminuted fractures, or shattered bones, are a common result of intense and direct pressure on the skeletal structure. They often require extensive treatment and rehabilitation.

Soft Tissue Damage

Crushing forces can severely impact soft tissues, leading to muscle and ligament tears and more severe soft tissue injuries like the breakdown of muscle tissue. This can necessitate long-term care to restore function and reduce pain.

Vascular Trauma

When blood vessels are crushed, it can lead to severe complications and can potentially be life-threatening if not promptly addressed. 

Nerve Damage

Beyond immediate pain, nerve damage from crushing injuries might cause numbness, tingling, or loss of function, posing significant challenges in daily life.

What Are Potential Complications of a Crush Injury?

Crush injuries are already serious enough on their own, but there is a high risk of serious complications, including: 

  • Compartment syndrome (CS), a dangerous, painful complication caused by pressure building in muscles and reducing blood flow
  • Rhabdomyolysis, a breakdown of muscle that releases myoglobin into the blood which damages the kidneys
  • Acute kidney injury
  • Muscle necrosis
  • Traumatic asphyxia (lack of oxygen) caused by a severe chest crush injury 
  • Acute respiratory distress syndrome
  • Fat embolism syndrome
  • Amputation when extremities are too mangled to save 
  • Sepsis
  • Organ damage

For many crush injury victims, the initial injury is sadly just the beginning. Crush injuries often trigger a cascade of serious and life-threatening complications.

What Causes Crushing Injuries?

Crushing injuries can be a result of a variety of accidents. The most common causes are motor vehicle accidents and workplace accidents.

Car accidents and truck accidents are common causes of crushing injuries. These injuries usually happen in high-impact crashes. The force exerted by the crash causes parts of the vehicle to crumple. This traps occupants and applies intense pressure to their bodies.  

Common scenarios include head-on collisions, where the front end of a vehicle is crushed, or rollover accidents, where the roof or sides of a vehicle may collapse on occupants. 

Workplace Accidents

Crushing injuries in the workplace can occur in various ways, often due to machinery, heavy objects, or accidents. 

Workplace crushing accidents often involve one of the following: 

  • Heavy machinery and equipment like forklifts
  • Falling objects, especially in warehouses
  • Building or trench collapse
  • Caught-between accidents 

Construction, manufacturing, and warehouse workers face the highest risk of being crushed. Caught-between accidents are one of the “fatal four” leading causes of fatalities in construction.

What Is My Crushing Injury Case Worth?

The value of your injury claim will depend on many factors, such as: 

  • Your total financial losses
  • The severity of your injuries
  • Whether you are left disabled or permanently impaired
  • How painful your injuries have been
  • How your injuries will affect your life
  • Whether you will be able to return to work

Whether you can pursue a personal injury lawsuit and insurance coverage can also limit the value of your claim. 

The best way to determine how much your case is worth is scheduling a consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer. A lawyer will review these factors to estimate what your case may be worth.

What Compensation Can I Recover For My Crushing Injury In Chicago, Illinois?

You might recover compensation through a personal injury lawsuit if someone else’s negligence caused your crushing injury. 

There are two broad forms of compensation available in personal injury cases: 

  • Economic damages for financial losses like medical bills, lost wages, and lost earning capacity
  • Non-economic damages for pain and suffering, mental anguish, disfigurement, and other personal losses

If you were hurt in a workplace accident, you can pursue workers’ compensation benefits for your medical expenses and lost wages. 

Workers’ Compensation Benefits

In Illinois, workers’ compensation benefits provide a safety net for workers who sustain crush injuries on the job. These benefits help with the financial burden by covering medical care and replacing lost income

Workers’ compensation benefits may include the following:

  • Medical Expenses
  • Temporary Total Disability (TTD)
  • Temporary Partial Disability (TPD)
  • Permanent Total Disability (PTD)
  • Permanent Partial Disability (PPD) 

Depending on the circumstances, you may still have a personal injury claim against a negligent party. This may involve defective products or traffic accidents while you were on the job.

How Long Do I Have to File a Crushing Injury Lawsuit In Illinois?

In Illinois, the statute of limitations for filing a personal injury lawsuit is two years from the date of the accident. If you fail to file your lawsuit before the deadline, you will lose your right to compensation. 

If you were hurt in a workplace accident, you must report the accident to your employer within 45 days, with few exceptions. This is necessary to retain your right to workers’ comp benefits. You have three years from the date of your injury to file a claim for workers’ compensation benefits. 

It’s important to take action as soon as possible to preserve your claim. Delays can threaten your ability to recover compensation and allow evidence to deteriorate or disappear. The sooner you start the process, the stronger your case can be.

Contact Our Chicago Personal Injury Lawyers for a Free Consultation

Have you suffered a crush injury in Chicago, IL? You may be entitled to compensation, and our Chicago personal injury lawyers are here to help. 

Attorneys of Chicago Personal Injury Lawyers has more than 30 years of combined experience representing accident victims. We have recovered tens of millions of dollars and help with both personal injury and workers’ compensation claims. 

Contact our law office today for a free consultation to discuss your case and what we can do to help you recover the money you deserve. You can call us at (312) 929-2884.