​Head-On Collisions

A car crash is terrifying, but staring down at the headlights of another vehicle right before the impact may be one of the scariest experiences that many people can imagine. Head-on collisions are dangerous car accidents that leave victims severely injured and, unfortunately, dead.

Car accident attorneys help victims get financial compensation for any necessary medical treatment, lost income, and emotional trauma caused by the collision. Any head-on collision accident victim or surviving family member should contact an attorney in their area to discuss their legal rights immediately after an accident.

Request A Free Consultation

What Is a Head-On Collision?

Car Accident AttorneyA head-on collision (sometimes called a “frontal” crash) happens when the front ends of two vehicles collide. The vehicles are usually traveling in opposite directions. These kinds of car crashes can lead to severe injuries or death.

Negligent drivers who cause head-on crashes should be responsible for paying for the losses that accident victims sustain. However, to determine the driver responsible for paying, a car accident lawyer must determine the at-fault party or parties.

Determining Fault in a Head-On Collision

Determining fault in a head-on collision is often tricky. In most head-on collisions, knowing how the accident happened can be challenging. An accident attorney can help you determine fault through the help of expert witnesses like accident reconstructionists and engineers.

The burden of proof in head-on collision cases, and all negligence cases, lies with the plaintiff. Each accident plaintiff must show each element of negligence, including duty, breach, causation, and damages.


Every driver owes a duty to other drivers to exercise reasonable care when operating their vehicle. Reasonable care means driving in a way that avoids injury or traffic crashes. The duty applies for the entire time a driver is on the road.


A breach of duty happens when the driver acts in a way that causes a crash. A breach of duty may happen because of any of the common reasons a head-on collision occurs.


Accident plaintiffs must show a connection between the crash and their injuries. Causation is usually the most challenging element of negligence to prove. An accident attorney can help you prove that the other driver caused the accident and your injuries.


Every head-on collision victim must prove they suffered a loss because of the accident. Without proof of injuries, then the plaintiff’s claim will be unsuccessful.

Common Causes of Head-On Collisions

Like other car accidents, head-on collisions often happen due to negligence. Either one or more drivers, car manufacturers, employers, etc., act without regard to others who share the road, and an accident happens. Some examples of common causes of head-on collisions include the following.

Wrong-Way Accidents

Wrong-way accidents are a common cause of head-on collisions. Since these accidents usually happen when two drivers travel in two different directions, head-on collisions often happen. These accidents usually occur when a driver makes a mistake and incorrectly enters an exit ramp, highway entrance, or one-way street.

Distracted Driving

Distracted driving happens when a person takes their eyes off the road or does something that takes away their attention from driving. Distracted driving includes cognitive, visual, and manual distractions, such as texting and driving, adjusting the GPS or temperature, eating, applying makeup, etc.


Speeding is one of the most common causes of traffic accidents across the United States. When a driver speeds, they may lose control of their car and cause a crash. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in a recent year, speeding killed 11,258 people nationwide. This risk behavior puts every driver and passenger on the road at risk.

Driving Under the Influence

Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is negligent. In addition to civil liability, a driver who is under the influence and causes a crash may face criminal penalties. Criminal responsibility varies based on state law but does not negate civil liability to accident victims.

Fatigued Driving

Driving while sleepy may seem like it is not as dangerous as other impaired driving, but it is as risky as driving after too many drinks. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in the past decade, 91,000 crashes involved a fatigued driver resulting in 50,000 injuries and 800 deaths. The CDC also reports an estimated 6,000 fatal crashes each year involve a driver operating their vehicle without adequate rest. Sleepy driving can lead to poor decision-making behind the wheel and cause a head-on collision.

Improper Lane Changes and Failure to Obey Traffic Laws

Drivers must follow traffic laws. When drivers fail to follow traffic laws, they put others at risk. Improper lane changes and failure to obey other traffic laws can lead to crashes that have devastating results.

Mechanical Failures

Mechanical failures often lead to severe traffic crashes. Poorly maintained brakes, for example, can make it impossible to stop the vehicle. A driver may swerve into another lane and crash into a vehicle in a head-on collision to avoid an accident. Drivers should do everything they can to properly maintain their vehicles for their protection and the safety of the people around them.

How Common Are Head-On Collisions?

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, head-on collisions account for around ten percent of all accident types across the country, making them the second-most common type of fatal accidents that occur annually. The United States Department of Transportation reported there were 3,631 fatal head-on accidents reported in a recent year.

Even if victims survive a head-on collision, they can face a long road to recovery from catastrophic injuries. They might need extensive treatment and personal care, and many people never make a full recovery. They face a lifetime of impairments, disabilities, or disfigurement.

Common Injuries in Head-On Collisions

Each accident is unique, and a victim’s injuries will vary based on the accident’s severity. So, the injuries that you suffer will depend on the crash. Some commonly reported injuries in head-on collisions include the following.


Whiplash happens when a person is forced quickly forward and then quickly forced backward. The neck is usually the primary area of the body that is affected. Whiplash can cause soft tissue damage. The effects of a whiplash injury can be temporary and treated with rest and ice.


Most vehicles carry flammable liquids and toxic chemicals. A crash may cause thermal and chemical burns. In addition to thermal and chemical burns potentially harming the victim, the impact of a crash can cause an explosion. Any burn from a car accident can lead to severe injury, scarring, and disfigurement.

Spinal Cord Injuries and Paralysis

Spinal cord injuries can lead to paralysis. Any injury to the spine can leave the victim unable to walk and care for themselves. The loss a person may feel because they can no longer care for themselves means they may be entitled to compensation enough to try to recoup their losses.

Broken Bones

Car accidents can cause broken bones. Treating broken bones can mean months in a cast. The injuries may cause you to lose time at work and leave you with substantial medical bills.

Traumatic Brain Injuries

Brain injuries can cause a permanent decrease in the accident victim’s quality of life. An accident victim that suffers from a head injury may lose their ability to sleep, speak, and advocate for themselves.

Treating a traumatic brain injury may require CT scans, X-rays, and surgery. The costs can add up quickly.

Blunt Force Trauma

A head-on crash can cause blunt-force trauma. Blunt force trauma is a heavy object’s sudden and severe impact on another. Injuries from a blunt force impact can include cuts, scrapes, bruises, whiplash, broken bones, and even death.

Internal Damage

Damage to internal organs and internal bleeding can be the result of getting into a head-on collision. Identifying these injuries requires the help of a physician. Seeking medical help after an accident is crucial to find evidence of these potentially deadly injuries.

Emotional Trauma

A traffic crash’s mental and emotional impact is as valid as physical losses. These intangible damages are just as compensable. However, the damage that accident victims sustain after an accident can be challenging to prove. Using the skills of an experienced accident attorney can be the best way for you to recover from these losses.

Head-On Collisions and Wrongful Death Claims

Head-on collisions are a type of car accident that can easily become deadly. Wrongful death claims are among the most difficult car accident-related claims. If someone that you love died in a car accident, you might be entitled to file a wrongful death lawsuit.

Wrongful death laws vary based on state law. Most states allow close family members and dependents of a person who died in a car accident to file suit to recover certain damages. If you believe you have a wrongful death claim, finding and working with an experienced wrongful death accident attorney is a good idea to help you get the compensation you deserve.

Potential damages in wrongful death cases can include the cost to recoup the losses the deceased might have recovered if they had survived. Those losses may include lost income, medical bills, and property damage. The family may also receive financial compensation for lost companionship and consortium, pain and suffering, and the mental and emotional damage that may result from losing a family member.

How Can an Attorney Help Me?

An experienced accident attorney can help you put yourself in the best position to recover financially after a head-on collision fully. An attorney can help you win your case in the following ways.

Negotiate With the Insurance Company

Negotiating with the insurance company can be challenging, especially if this is the first time you have been in a car accident lawsuit. Insurance adjusters are not loyal to you. That is why you need an advocate.

The insurance company may offer you a quick settlement to resolve the case soon after the crash. These settlements usually do not cover all the damage you may have. An attorney can help you negotiate a proper settlement covering your current and anticipated losses.

Find All Potentially Responsible Parties

Like other car crashes, many potentially responsible parties may be in a head-on collision case. For example, suppose one driver was working at the time of the crash. In that case, their employer may be responsible for paying for the other driver’s injuries and losses if their employee acted negligently.

Answer Your Legal Questions

After an accident, you will understandably have many questions, and as the case continues, you will have many more. Your attorney is your resource for answers to your legal questions. Having an attorney helps prevent the stress of going down internet rabbit holes searching for answers. Rely on your attorney’s experience to answer your questions.

Represent You at Trial

Advocating for yourself at trial can be a tall task. An attorney with courtroom experience can present evidence and tell your story convincingly before a jury. Your attorney will prepare you for trial, and if you choose to testify on your own behalf, you can trust that your attorney will do everything they can to prepare you for the questions that the other side may ask.

What if I Cannot Afford an Attorney?

If you cannot afford an attorney, that does not mean you cannot pursue financial recovery. Many civil accident attorneys work on a contingency fee basis. The availability of contingency fee agreements allows more people to receive the money they deserve after an accident.

Under the terms of a contingency fee agreement, the client and attorney agree to defer payment for legal services until the case resolves. The attorney will usually take a percentage of the final settlement amount as payment for legal services.

Contact a Car Accident Attorney Today

Tatiana Boohoff, Lawyer for Motorcycle Accident cases near Tampa area.
Tatiana Boohoff, Car Accident Attorney

If you or a loved one have suffered an injury or died in a head-on collision, contact an attorney in your area immediately. Legal representation protects your rights and improves your chances of monetary recovery. Start building your legal team today by contacting a local personal injury lawyer.

June 5, 2023
Boohoff Icon

Free Consultation

We Are Here For You 24/7


“Boohoff Law definitely stands behind integrity. Tatiana is not only a fantastic attorney in her expertise, she’s also down-to-earth – truly a people person.”
– Elissa M.

“Really pleased with Boohoff Law! Received immediate responses when I had any questions. Treated amazingly by all staff … made this process a true breeze!”

– Caitlyn M.
“Everyone here is so helpful. They jumped through every hoop necessary to get me the settlement I rightfully deserved. They made me feel right at home.”
– Brandy K.

Related Posts

What is the Average Settlement for a Car Accident Neck and Back Injury?

A person’s back and neck are often never the same after a car accident. Some people experience issues for most of their lives, including problems standing or chronic pain. One of the biggest misconceptions about back and neck pain is that it is not as severe as many other injuries. But back and neck pain […]

Concussion Car Accident Settlement Amounts

A car accident is one of the most common ways Americans can suffer a concussion, which is a form of traumatic brain injury that can leave people with lasting cognitive, physical, and emotional impairments. Concussions can vary in severity and the effects they have on different victims. This variation also comes in the amount an […]

What Happens if I Get Hurt on an E-scooter in Tampa?

Electric scooters, commonly known as E-scooters, can be a fun way to travel short distances around Tampa. Unfortunately, accidents involving these vehicles are common, especially when other drivers violate traffic rules and become distracted. If you or someone you love suffered injuries in a Tampa E-scooter accident, a knowledgeable Tampa scooter accident lawyer  can help. […]

Recovery is personal.

We recover millions for our clients every month, but we know that every case is different and that recovery is personal.
“Boohoff Law definitely stands behind integrity. Tatiana is not only a fantastic attorney in her expertise, she’s also down-to-earth – truly a people person.”
– Elissa M.
% star rating
“Really pleased with Boohoff Law! Received immediate responses when I had any questions. Treated amazingly by all staff … made this process a true breeze!”
– Caitlyn M.
5 star rating
“Everyone here is so helpful. They jumped through every hoop necessary to get me the settlement I rightfully deserved. They made me feel right at home.”
– Brandy K.

You're better off with Boohoff.