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What Happens to Your Body in a 40 Mph Car Crash?

This article was last updated: Feb. 2nd, 2023

When we hear about dangerous car accidents, we likely associate them with highways and high speeds. But you don’t need to be traveling at high speeds to sustain serious or potentially fatal injuries. These accidents could happen when you’re in an accident going at 40 mph.

While it can be difficult to imagine that an accident at that speed would look like, you can look at possible statistics that can help the damage of that car crash, including how the human body is affected. Here, our car accident lawyers take a look at what happens to your body in a 40mph car crash.

Examining the Damage of a 40 Mph Car Crash

A tool that can help show just how devastating a car crash at this speed can be is a car crash calculator. This takes into account a person’s weight and whether or not they were wearing a seat belt. At 40 mph, a 185 lb. person wearing a seat belt will face an average impact force of 67,080 N, or newtons.

While you may not know what that force would be like in newtons, the table also puts this in terms of what that would feel like in lbs. If you were hit with the force of 67,080 N, it feels like getting hit with a mass of 15,075 lbs. It’s likely that this accident would case severe injuries or fatalities.

This is also taking into account that the person was wearing a seat belt. The impact force increases drastically when the vehicle occupant isn’t wearing a seat belt. Let’s reexamine the numbers for a 185 lb. person in a 40mph crash if they weren’t buckled in:

  • The average impact force is 335,398 N.
  • This would feel like getting hit with a mass of 75,375 lbs.

The human femur can break when it’s hit with the force of 4,000 N. A 40mph car accident far exceeds that amount, which is why they can be so deadly.

This calculator also only takes into account the seat belt, weight, and speed of the crash. It’s important to know what other factors can increase the likelihood of a car accident resulting in severe injuries or fatalities.

What Factors Can Affect the Severity of a Car Accident?

While the speed and whether or not you’re wearing a seat belt both greatly affect how a car accident can affect you, there are some other factors to be aware of:

  • Vehicle Occupant’s Position. When a person is sitting in their seat, they’re positioned so the seat belt and airbag can help reduce the impact they sustain. However, if the person is turned around or twisted in some way, those tools may not be able to work as well, and they could sustain more severe injuries.
  • Type of Collision. The type of car accident can have a major part in determining the type of injuries that one sustains. For example, a head-on collision puts the impact at the front of the car near the driver, making it one of the deadliest forms of car collisions. T-bones, or broadside collisions, can be particularly dangerous for passengers when the driver strikes the door next to them.

There are many factors in play that can explain the severity of car accident injuries. However, one common factor of car accidents is their cause: negligence. A person’s decision to not use their signal, put on a seat belt, or to be on their phone while driving can all result in a tragedy. That’s where our law firm can help.

Have You Been Harmed in an Auto Collision?

If you or a loved one has been hurt in a car accident, you can look into your legal options. You may have grounds to seek compensation that will provide you with the security you need to cover your medical costs, days of lost pay from missing work, and additional losses that you’ve suffered.

A car accident lawyer from Columbia can stand up for your rights and fight for you to get full and fair compensation. In some cases, you may be offered a settlement from an insurance company that undervalues your injuries and damages. Your lawyer won’t let you settle for less. We’ll help protect your rights and will advocate for your future.

The Solomon Law Group is here for you. To get started on your claim, give our office a call for a free case evaluation. We’ll discuss your case, your options, and how we can help you move forward.

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