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Here’s Why Head-On Auto Collisions Are One of the Most Deadly Types of Auto Accidents

distracted driverWhile no one would describe any car accident as anything but scary, head-on collisions can be some of the most terrifying and dangerous. Because of the force of the impact—often at a high speed—and the fact that the vehicles’ front ends are crashing into each other, these wrecks can cause victims to suffer life-altering injuries or death.

Even at a slower speed, these accidents tend to result in more devastating injuries not only from the force of the accident, but also from shattered and flying glass, twisted metal from the smashed-in front ends, and from victims crashing into hard objects.

Driver Negligence Is Often the Cause of Head-on Collisions

According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, head-on crashes caused 54 percent of fatalities in auto accidents in 2015, resulting in 7,068 deaths. Why do drivers fail to see a vehicle coming toward them in the opposite direction? Sadly, preventable driver negligence is almost always the cause. Common reasons for these tragic wrecks include:

  • Distracted driving. Eating and drinking, texting, talking on a cellphone, and adjusting instrument controls are a few of the forms of distracted driving that cause a driver to take his eyes and mind off the road.
  • Crossing the center lane. When a driver drifts across the center lane into oncoming traffic for any reason, a head-on collision is the likely consequence.
  • Speeding. A speeding driver is less able to adjust to curves or obstacles in the road, sometimes causing him to veer into the lane of oncoming traffic. Reaction time for stopping a vehicle to avoid a collision is greatly increased, as there's simply too much distance to cover.
  • Impaired driving. A driver’s skills are impaired while intoxicated due to alcohol or drug use. Some of the most tragic and deadly drunk driving crashes can occur when someone goes the wrong way on a street, highway entrance, or exit ramp.
  • Drowsy driving. Driving when fatigued can be as dangerous as driving when drunk or drugged. A driver can unintentionally drift across the center line while fighting to stay awake or actually dosing off at the wheel.


Survivors of head-on collisions can suffer catastrophic injuries, such as traumatic brain injury, paralysis, amputation, internal organ damage, and serious fractures. Because of this, the values of their claims tend to be higher. This means the negligent driver’s insurance company might fight harder to not pay a victim’s claim.

If you or a family member was the victim of one of these accidents, you need an experienced car accident attorney to help you fight for the compensation you deserve. Schedule a free consultation with Alan Morton to get your questions answered and learn about your legal options.