Driving is among the riskiest activities you do on a daily basis, but – unlike other things you avoid while pregnant – it is a necessity for personal and professional reasons. Unfortunately, while you are just as likely to be involved in a car accident as other Miami motorists, you and your baby are at extreme risk of serious injuries because of your vulnerable condition. According to Safe Ride 4 Kids, an organization dedicated to preventing injuries and deaths to children in auto collisions:
- Automobile collisions are the single largest cause of death for pregnant mothers; and,
- Motor vehicle accidents are the top cause of traumatic fetal mortality.
If you were hurt in an auto crash while pregnant or your fetus suffered harm, it is important to consult with your doctor about the unique implications for your health. You should also reach out to a Miami car accident attorney to discuss your legal rights.
Auto Crash Complications for Pregnant Women and Unborn Babies
Beyond the cuts, broken bones, head injuries, and other trauma that could affect any accident victim, the mother to-be and fetus could be harmed through:
- Miscarriage, where the forceful impact of a crash deprives the fetus of oxygen;
- Placental abruption, in which the placenta prematurely detaches from the uterine wall and cuts off blood flow;
- Premature birth, if the stress of an accident leads the woman to go into labor at a point less than 37 weeks of gestation;
- Maternal shock, which may occur when the mother’s body diverts all energy to “nonessential” functions;
- Coup and contrecoup injuries, terms that describe harm to the fetus’ head and brain; and,
- Uterine rupture, a spontaneous tearing that occurs from violent force – often from the strain of the lap strap of a seatbelt
Your Rights After an Auto Collision
All victims of a car accident have legal remedies under Florida law; it is possible to recover amounts for your medical costs, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses. However, your damages can be intensified for a number of reasons:
- The trauma of a motor vehicle collision could take your healthy pregnancy into the realm of high-risk pregnancy, in which you may require additional testing, monitoring, and prenatal care. Plus, you may need to take maternity leave for a longer period for bedrest.
- The harm to the fetus could be life-long, particularly when the infant suffers from birth defects after a car accident. Developmental, cognitive, and physical disabilities are often the result of the direct trauma, but they could also result from a preterm birth or difficult delivery following a collision.
Speak to a Miami Car Accidents Lawyer for Free
This information demonstrates the importance of seeking immediate medical care after an auto crash, but you should also make it a priority to reach out to an attorney regarding your legal rights. For additional details, please contact Gerson & Schwartz, PA in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, or West Palm Beach, FL. We can set up a free consultation to review your circumstances and advise you on options to proceed.