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valerielynn
11-16-2013, 11:50 PM
I haven't written or worked on my novel in months because I've had so much on my plate and I needed to put it away for awhile to focus on other things. But last night when I was trying to get to sleep I started running a new idea in my head for my 2nd chapter. I tried to forget about the idea because I thought that my 2nd chapter was okay as is. But I think this new idea is pretty awesome but I need to do a little research.

So my new idea for my 2nd chapter involves a car accident caused by someone running them off the road. There will be 4 of my characters in this car that gets run off the road and into a body of water. So my first question is if someone is trying to run somebody off the road would they more than likely ram them from behind or from the side? Secondly the car lands in a body of water and 1 character dies, the driver almost dies, and the 2 other characters in that car survive with minor injuries. The driver, when pulled from the water is unconscious and takes several efforts to revive him. So how long can a person be trapped under water before dying?

I'm also trying to think of some possible injuries that could occur from this accident. The main ones that I can think of are head injuries, broken/sprained ribs, cuts, collapsed lung. What could be some other possible injuries that could occur from an accident like this?

waylander
11-17-2013, 12:11 AM
Just clipping the offside rear corner would be enough to tip someone off the road.

jclarkdawe
11-17-2013, 01:34 AM
Take a look at this thread: Wreck without obvious cause (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=278557&highlight=clark-dawe)

Drowning time depends upon the temperature of the water. Can be as little as five minutes to thirty minutes. Further, cars flood at different rates, depending upon how air tight they are. It will even take a few minutes for many cars to sink.

Best of luck,

Jim Clark-Dawe

GypsyKing
11-17-2013, 02:37 AM
I survived a very bad drunk driving wreck when I was twelve. My injuries were limited, but they included scratching of the hip bone from the seat belt and a ruptured intestine. Hypothermia is also a possibility if the water they end up in is cold enough.

Keep in mind that someone who is knocked out and inhales water rapidly is going to drown faster than someone who fights for life.

valerielynn
11-17-2013, 02:53 AM
Just curious! How long would it take someone to recover from a ruptured intestine?

CoolBlue
11-17-2013, 04:27 AM
Just curious! How long would it take someone to recover from a ruptured intestine?

How long is a piece of string, or how long do you have? :)

Here are some of the factors that will play into it:

1. The extent of the injury. The issue is primarily the extent of the contamination of the abdominal cavity by the bowel contents, and what part of the bowel it came from. Think gastric contents vs small bowel vs large bowel.
2. The condition of the victim. Young healthy person, with no other significant injury vs older, obese person with diabetes, COPD and heart disease who also experienced a head injury and a fractured pelvis in the accident. And did I say they also had a bleeding disorder and allergies to several important antibiotics?
3. The time to management of the condition, in other words, being able to get in there to get the cavity cleaned out, and the leaking and bleeding fixed. Nowadays, we tend toward as early as possible rescue surgery (to limit the time in OR), and them going back later to fix things up better.
4. The quality of the care. All the way from the scene to the ER, the OR, the ICU, the ward, and potentially, the rehab centre.

Ballpark? 6 weeks to be more or less normal, in a relatively minor case. Even less in a very healthy person with only a tiny leak. Big cases, at least 3 months. Bad cases - never. This is not even addressing the increased risk of complications from the injury and surgery, which can occur much later, as well as in the acute period, of course.

Not sure if this is helpful, or just muddying the works.

Happy to take a stab at any specific questions you may have. It is difficult to understand the right questions to ask sometimes, so specifics of the injury mechanism and victim is helpful.

HTH
CB

valerielynn
11-23-2013, 05:08 AM
So I've been working on the car accident scene and I decided to write 2 different drafts to see which one I like best. One draft was my original idea with the car being run off the road into a body of water, and the other draft was a new idea that I had which was very close to Princess Diana's tragic accident. I'm really liking my newest draft (which is the one that is similar to Princess Di's accident). But I'm having just one minor problem with the scene. There will be 2 cars that get caught in this accident and a driver in one of the cars gets trapped by something on the drivers side which is what the driver ends up slamming into when the accident occurs. But I just don't know what he could be trapped up against? Does anyone have any suggestions?

jclarkdawe
11-23-2013, 05:29 AM
Foot caught between the pedals if you don't want the front end crushed in. Otherwise, the steering wheel being pushed backwards.

Best of luck,

Jim Clark-Dawe

valerielynn
11-23-2013, 05:48 AM
This is just a thought that I just had and I don't know if it's possible. But the driver that gets trapped suffers some internal bleeding but survives. So would it be possible for whatever he's trapped against to be the thing that causes the internal bleeding?

jclarkdawe
11-23-2013, 06:24 AM
Steering wheel. You'll get a lot of crushing in the engine compartment, the engine will slide under the driver's compartment, steering wheel is forced back, although it crushes at a couple of points in the process.

Extrication involves removing/rolling the dash to gain access. Looking at about half an hour of time at a minimum. If the patient is short legged, the legs might not get broken. Chest will have a bruise matching the pattern on the steering wheel.

Best of luck,

Jim Clark-Dawe

CoolBlue
11-23-2013, 06:52 AM
What Jim said.

Just the deformation of the vehicle can make extrication difficult. If an injured person is manipulated too much, they can suffer permanent injury from the extrication process itself. Spinal injuries are high on this list.

Another way to suffer blunt abdominal injury is by having your seatbelt riding too high, especially if you are obese.

The person might have something in their lap.

But, at the end of the day, what Jim said.

Steering wheel.

HTH
CB