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Southern_girl29
09-26-2006, 09:12 AM
In my novel, my MC and her daughter will be hit by a car. She'll see it coming in time to push her daughter a little out of the way, but not enough to keep her from getting hurt. For the daughter, I was thinking a fractured skull. The mom pushes her out of the way, she falls, hits her head on the concrete and fractures her skull. Is this too far out there?

For the mom, I was thinking of a concussion, a fractured pelvis and possibly, a broken arm or wrist. Again, does this sound about right? I've tried googling it but I don't get a whole lot of useful links. Thanks in advance.

Alien Enigma
09-26-2006, 12:36 PM
When I worked with the fire department, I accidentally ran over the Chief with a fire truck. I felt so bad about it. I was backing the truck up and somehow he got hit. He said he was alright, but man, I felt bad for him.

sharra
09-26-2006, 12:47 PM
It depends on the speed the car is going. I got knocked off of a bicycle and flipped over the bonnet, but I walked away with nothing worse than a badly grazed knees and a sprained wrist. If the driver had been going just a bit faster, it would probably have been hospital or the morgue.

Nicholas S.H.J.M Woodhouse
09-26-2006, 12:49 PM
i got hit a few years back. it sounds like it might be a similar hit to what happens in your story. i saw it coming but wasn't able to get out of the way. the paramedics told me that all my muscles had tensed as hard as they could at the prospect and that they wouldn't be good for a while. i think if she has time to move her daughter out of the way - even if that is instinct - she is obviously aware of the danger and her body might go into some kind of immediate shock or fear and tense up because of it.

a crash is a crash and they're all pretty different within the definition. broken arms, wrists, death, minor headache, whiplash...almost any injury can happen. make the call according to what is required for your story.
eg -
is the father a nutter? is he coming to get his daughter back? if so then it helps your story if the mother is hurt enough so that her vulnerability is raised.

just plan it out in your head thoroughly. she should only be crossing the road with her daughter at crossing, when the light is red or when there is not a car in sight. if this is all true then the driver must have been going pretty fast so the injuries are likely to be medium to big.

good luck

Saanen
09-27-2006, 03:07 AM
When I was in college I was sort of hit by a car. I was on my bicycle waiting at a corner to cross the street; when the walk light turned on I rode forward on my bike. A car ran the red light and I actually hit the side of the car as it passed. My bike was whipped right out from under me and clattered down the street, but I didn't even fall down. I think I had some bruises but nothing serious, but my bike was trashed. :(

I never saw that car coming, either.

Rabe
09-27-2006, 08:32 AM
For the mom, I was thinking of a concussion, a fractured pelvis and possibly, a broken arm or wrist. Again, does this sound about right? I've tried googling it but I don't get a whole lot of useful links. Thanks in advance.

Having had a fractured pelvis (and well, sort of still do) I can tell you a few things.

One; it's *extremely dangerous* to fracture a pelvis because it's got so many blood vessels attached to it. The pelvic cavity can hold up to four quarts of blood before it's really noticed. However, the force impact required to fracture a pelvis *probably* wouldn't come into play in this scenario. Because of the way it's situated, the pelvis becomes pretty well protected and requires a lot of impact - falls from great heights, motorcycle accidents, car accidents where passangers aren't wearing seat belts, etc.

You may want to consider looking or researching for something that's colloquially known as "pedestrian fractures" or breaks. You may also consider a broken/fractured hip. Though, when you start getting into the hip/pelvic fractures, you start to get into limited mobility/recovery. They're where the leg is broken just under the knee because that's usually where the main force of impact strikes the person. Depending on the type of car, speed and so on. Fractured arm/wrist sounds plausible depending on how she gets thrown.

Thought, I'm wondering about the daughter just getting a fractured skull if she's still hit by the car that's travelling with enough force to do so much damage to the mother. Depending on the age and size of the child, that part may need to be rethought to have the ring of plausibility.

Rabe...

Southern_girl29
09-27-2006, 08:44 AM
Having had a fractured pelvis (and well, sort of still do) I can tell you a few things.

One; it's *extremely dangerous* to fracture a pelvis because it's got so many blood vessels attached to it. The pelvic cavity can hold up to four quarts of blood before it's really noticed. However, the force impact required to fracture a pelvis *probably* wouldn't come into play in this scenario. Because of the way it's situated, the pelvis becomes pretty well protected and requires a lot of impact - falls from great heights, motorcycle accidents, car accidents where passangers aren't wearing seat belts, etc.

You may want to consider looking or researching for something that's colloquially known as "pedestrian fractures" or breaks. You may also consider a broken/fractured hip. Though, when you start getting into the hip/pelvic fractures, you start to get into limited mobility/recovery. They're where the leg is broken just under the knee because that's usually where the main force of impact strikes the person. Depending on the type of car, speed and so on. Fractured arm/wrist sounds plausible depending on how she gets thrown.

Thought, I'm wondering about the daughter just getting a fractured skull if she's still hit by the car that's travelling with enough force to do so much damage to the mother. Depending on the age and size of the child, that part may need to be rethought to have the ring of plausibility.

Rabe...

Thank you. I was doing some reading after I posted this last night and I found out how extremely dangerous a fractured pelvis can be. I'm thinking leg might be the better answer. I have a picture of this scene of her confronting the actor. She's standing outside of his house with her crutches.

As for the little girl, I wonder if the mother pushing her out of the way and her just falling and hitting her head could fracture her skull. On one of the Web sites I read, it did say that kids have more of a chance of fracturing their skulls. Maybe I won't have the child be hit. Her mom will push her out of the way, but she's still hurt indirectly because of it.

Shiraz
09-27-2006, 05:03 PM
Head injuries are pretty nasty, especially if you fracture the skull - can be deadly at that point.

A concussion isn't unreasonable, however - probably quite common. And the limb breaks, too. Perhaps you could throw in a few broken ribs and collapsed lung; not normally life-threatening.

wordmonkey
09-27-2006, 05:31 PM
How old is the kid?

When I was younger, the daughter of our nextdoor neighbor was hit crossing street. The car ran a red-light. I have no idea how fast he was going, but when the cops arrived and started the investigation it showed that she had been thrown twenty feet as a result of the impact.

She didn't break a single bone.

Seems the doctors said that a) she was young enough that her bones were "soft" enough to not break; and b) she was knocked out and her body was completely relaxed when she hit the ground.

She was incredibly lucky, and from researching stuff later, I am more surprised that she didn't suffer some internal damage to organs even if she was fracture free. That said, maybe a busted spleen (no one really knows where that is or what it does anyways - I think it's the tooth-fairy of bodily functions) would be something serious enough, yet not deadly?

Southern_girl29
09-27-2006, 05:57 PM
I was doing a little more research last night and found that a skull fracture may not be as serious in a child if the brain doesn't swell. If the brain swells, there is a huge potential for disaster. I wrote the scene last night and as it stands now the little girl has a broken collarbone and shoulder bone and a skull fracture. My MC has a broken leg and wrist and a concussion.

wordmonkey
09-27-2006, 08:43 PM
Head injuries can also nix the immediate short term memories. You MC might only remember up to breakfast that morning and have no idea what she did for the two hours between breakfast and the accident.

SeanDSchaffer
09-27-2006, 10:23 PM
I got hit pretty slightly by a car whose driver was not watching where he was going. I remember that neither he nor his passenger noticed I was there until I screamed "Watch where you're going, you idiot!" at him. This was after he hit me. He was surprised to see me in the crosswalk when I had the right-of-way.

I seem to remember I did not hit the hood of his car, but rather that, because the car was moving so slowly, and I saw him coming, I was able to jump out of the way just after his car made contact with my lower leg.

Rabe
09-28-2006, 08:28 AM
As an aside, you don't have to be 'not' wearing your seatbelt to get a fractured pelvis. The steering column does a wonderful job of doing that while you're still wearing your seatbelt. Maybe passengers get 'em broke that way. *shrug*

I wrote about passangers not wearing seat belts cause that's a personal experience. I've never thought about steering wheel impacts and pelvic fractures/breaks mainly because of the collapsible (?) nature of the steering columns these days and mainly associate those with upper body injuries.

But interesting premise.

Rabe...

Tornadoboy
09-28-2006, 04:14 PM
If you want the daughter to only appear to be seriously injured you may have her merely lacerate her head upon impact. Doing so without other life threatening injuries is entirely plausible depending upon what it is she lands on, cuts to the head and face bleed dramatically and even a relatively minor wound requiring maybe 5 stitches could make it appear that she's in serious and immediate trouble. When I was a kid I banged my forehead on something and totally freaked out because the blood was literally spurting out of my head, but ultimately all I needed was 3 stitches and I never even so much as suffered a headache from it.

Tsu Dho Nimh
09-29-2006, 03:47 AM
In my novel, my MC and her daughter will be hit by a car. She'll see it coming in time to push her daughter a little out of the way, but not enough to keep her from getting hurt.

For plot purposes, how bad do you NEED to hurt them? How long do you want them in the hospital and how close to death's door do they come?

How long a recovery period does the plot need? Do you need visible scars or just the emotional ones?

Figure that out and we can decide what injuries to inflict.

Southern_girl29
09-29-2006, 07:09 AM
For plot purposes, how bad do you NEED to hurt them? How long do you want them in the hospital and how close to death's door do they come?

How long a recovery period does the plot need? Do you need visible scars or just the emotional ones?

Figure that out and we can decide what injuries to inflict.

The accident is a catalyst to my MC realizing that she needs to get her act together and be strong. The person who ran her down has been harassing her, and she has left it up to the police to take care of it. The accident will bring out her inner strength. About two weeks after the accident, I want her to be able to go to the police station, talk to her harasser's brother and then go and confront the harasser. My MC is not the type to get upset just because she's been hurt; the fact that her daughter, the person she cares about most in this world, has been hurt is more important.

Rabe
09-29-2006, 07:52 AM
The accident is a catalyst to my MC realizing that she needs to get her act together and be strong. The person who ran her down has been harassing her, and she has left it up to the police to take care of it. The accident will bring out her inner strength. About two weeks after the accident, I want her to be able to go to the police station, talk to her harasser's brother and then go and confront the harasser. My MC is not the type to get upset just because she's been hurt; the fact that her daughter, the person she cares about most in this world, has been hurt is more important.

Shouldn't be too hard a stretch then.

With punctured lungs, broken rib - trachoestomy - and a fractured pelvis, I was released from the hosptial two weeks after the accident. Probably would have been earlier had I not had to spend a week in a coma because of severe cardiopulmonary edema. But as you're going with broken leg and such, having the scene take place two weeks later should certainly be plausible.

Rabe...

Kentuk
09-29-2006, 07:56 AM
Twice used to work a service station back in the full service days.
First time it ran over my foot, that was when I quit wearing safety shoes, rather break my toes then amputate.
Second time I saw her coming at the last moment and jumped, put a nice dent in the hood. The lady wanted the owner to pay for her hood. He was being nice up to that point but had his wife call the police. I wasn't hurt but she got points.
Is the next scene the hospital or do they pick up the pieces and go on to get mugged?

Southern_girl29
09-29-2006, 08:05 AM
Twice used to work a service station back in the full service days.
First time it ran over my foot, that was when I quit wearing safety shoes, rather break my toes then amputate.
Second time I saw her coming at the last moment and jumped, put a nice dent in the hood. The lady wanted the owner to pay for her hood. He was being nice up to that point but had his wife call the police. I wasn't hurt but she got points.
Is the next scene the hospital or do they pick up the pieces and go on to get mugged?

The next scene is in the hospital. The man who has been harassing her is a methamphetamine manufacturer and seller. She's the editor of a very small newspaper and has been running a series of stories about meth. The series came about after her harasser's brother was arrested for selling meth.

Kentuk
09-29-2006, 10:37 AM
The next scene is in the hospital. The man who has been harassing her is a methamphetamine manufacturer and seller. She's the editor of a very small newspaper and has been running a series of stories about meth. The series came about after her harasser's brother was arrested for selling meth.
I worked as a tow driver for many years and was sometimes first on the scene. Amazingly I never had to render real first aid although a bud of mine seemed to take up the slack in my karma.
One thing about a bad accident is it does shake you up emotionally. Let your character out too soon and strange things may happen. Your character may act out of character. The other thing is that the emotional impact lingers. Your character may not want to cross the street or trust doing things alone. There can be a great deal of guilt involved.
As you can tell from all the above experiences a wide variety of injury may happen and almost anything is believable. If you need a life threatening complication internal bleeding is the way to go.

Tsu Dho Nimh
09-29-2006, 06:17 PM
The accident is a catalyst to my MC realizing that she needs to get her act together and be strong. The person who ran her down has been harassing her, and she has left it up to the police to take care of it. The accident will bring out her inner strength. About two weeks after the accident, I want her to be able to go to the police station, talk to her harasser's brother and then go and confront the harasser. My MC is not the type to get upset just because she's been hurt; the fact that her daughter, the person she cares about most in this world, has been hurt is more important.

Have the daughter get a minor, but bloody, injury like a scalp laceration. They are spectacularly scary if you don't know what to do.

The MC .... have the car run over her foot and ankle - scary to hear the crunch, disables for a few weeks, but can result in little damage unless a bone breaks. She can look down at her feet and see that one of them is getting huge and purple.

She'd be sidelined with her purple, basket-ball sized foot elevated and in compression bandages for at least a week, crutching around for about 6 weeks, resting with her foot elevated at every opportunity (throbbing and painful!), and limping for a while longer.

X-rays would show no broken bones, but a lot of "contusions" and internal bleeding. Bruising will spread up the leg almost to the knee within a few days.

First aid rendered - EMTS will treat it as if broken, put a lower leg splint on it, slap some ice on it and take her in for X-rays. Child would get pressure applied (someone's hand pressing gauze pad over wound) to stop the bleeding, then swathed to hold the pad in place and hauled in for skull x-rays.