Seeking Compensation For a Crush Injury From a South Bend Car Crash

Posted on behalf of Pfeifer Morgan & Stesiak

on February 2, 2024

. Updated on February 16, 2024


Paramedics helping at the scene of an accident.The force of a car crash can be severe enough to cause victims to suffer devastating crush injuries. These injuries often occur when limbs get pinned down for an extended period. However, your chest or abdomen could also be subjected to intense pressure.

Pfeifer, Morgan & Stesiak explain how crush injuries can occur in a collision, symptoms to watch for and compensation for damages.

If you suffered a crush injury or another severe injury in a collision due to another party’s negligence, you may be able to pursue compensation for medical costs, pain and suffering and other damages. Our car accident lawyers in South Bend are prepared to manage the legal process on your behalf so you can focus on your recovery.

Call our office to schedule a FREE case review: (844) 678-1800.

What Are Crush Injuries and How Do They Happen in a Car Crash?

A crush injury happens when a body part is put under intense pressure for an extended period. For example, a victim’s leg or arm can get crushed if the force of the collision causes structural damage to your vehicle. This could cause your legs to get stuck under the dashboard or your leg to get crushed by a door that crumples inward.

Crush injuries may be more likely in high-speed collisions, as the force of impact is greater in these accidents. Underride collisions with commercial trucks could also cause enough structural damage to crush body parts.

Pedestrians are also at increased risk of crush injuries, such as from getting run over by a car.

In some cases, victims may get stuck in their vehicle after an accident, such as a rollover collision, and need paramedic assistance to get out of their car. While they are waiting to be extricated, they may be getting crushed or pinned between things.

What Are Some of the Symptoms Victims With Crush Injuries May Experience?

Crash victims who are pinned down and have a crush injury often experience some combination of the following list of symptoms:

  • Pain and tenderness
  • Bleeding
  • Bruising
  • Broken or fractured bones
  • Open wounds
  • Nerve injury
  • Swelling
  • Difficulty moving or using the injured limb
  • Changes in skin color at the site of the injury
  • Muscle weakness or loss of function
  • Damage to internal organs

Victims should not wait to seek treatment when enduring these and other injury symptoms. Not seeking treatment can cause symptoms to get more severe.

It is also important for victims to discuss any changes in pain level or symptoms with their doctor. Changes could indicate worsening of the injury. If these injuries worsen, immediate treatment is essential to help lower the risk of permanent complications.

What Medical Complications May Result From a Crush Injury?

Crush injuries can result in life-threatening medical conditions. For example, if victims crush their legs in a crash, they could develop ischemia. This occurs due to the lack of blood flow in that area. While ischemia can sometimes be successfully treated, some victims may need to have a limb amputated.

Impaired blood flow to an area may also lead to heart conditions that affect vital organs.

These are some of the other dangerous complications from car crash crush injuries:


Rhabdomyolsis is a serious medical condition that breaks down muscle tissues. During a crush injury, heavy metals can compress muscles. When this happens, the muscles release chemicals that could cause kidney failure and metabolic abnormalities.

Hypovolemic Shock

This happens when you lose 15 percent or more of your total blood supply. Losing this much blood means your body cannot circulate enough blood throughout your body. This can cause your organs to shut down.


This condition occurs when the potassium level in your blood gets too high. As a result, individuals can suffer from:

  • Fast heart rate
  • Chest pain
  • Abdominal pain

Some people who experience hyperkalemia may go into cardiac arrest, which could be fatal.

Crush Syndrome

Cells can die quickly after the body’s exposure to intense pressure. This can cause toxins to seep into the bloodstream. This could cause kidney or cardiac failure.

Compartment Syndrome

Compartment syndrome happens when pressure builds up on a victim’s body, leading to muscle swelling. This syndrome is likely to occur because victims are trapped or confined in a vehicle. If this happens to your spine or one of your legs, it could cause paralysis.

Can Crash Victims Include Damages for Crush Injuries in an Injury Claim?

Car crash victims can include damages for crush injuries if their accident was caused by another driver’s negligence. They must have evidence that connects their injuries to the crash.

Medical bills, pictures, medical records, the police report and other evidence can help connect an injury to a crash. These pieces of evidence and others may also help to establish that the crash was caused by negligence.

Crash victims with crush injuries may be eligible to seek significant compensation, as treatment can be expensive and long-lasting. These are some of the types of compensation that may be available in a car crash claim:

  • Medical expenses: Compensation for medical expenses can go towards ongoing treatment, prescription medications, hospital bills and any other medical cost needed for your recovery. Victims who had to have a limb amputated are likely to have ongoing medical expenses, as they must learn to function without the limb. Other victims may need dialysis to help prevent kidney failure. Other treatments that can be included in a claim may consist of forced alkaline diuresis, replenishing electrolytes and mannitol therapy to flush toxins from the body.
  • Property damage: After a crush injury collision, many vehicles are a total loss. You may be eligible for compensation that covers your vehicle replacement or repair of your vehicle.
  • Loss of wages: If your injuries prevent you from working for a time, you may be eligible for compensation for the wages you lost. If your injury prevents you from working again or causes you to have to change careers, compensation for loss of earning capacity may be available.
  • Pain and suffering: This refers to the physical and mental/emotional impact of a crush injury. Some victims may develop post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). A significant injury can also lead to declining mental health, such as depression or anxiety.

Contact Our South Bend Office To Discuss Your Claim

We understand that compensation cannot erase what happened in a car accident. However, it can ease the recovery process so that you are not worried about medical bills or other damage.

At Pfeifer, Morgan & Stesiak, we are committed to helping you seek the maximum compensation possible. There are no upfront costs if you hire our firm. We only get paid if we recover compensation for you.

Proven results. Millions recovered. (844) 678-1800.

Pfeifer, Morgan & Stesiak

Serious Attorneys for Serious Cases