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Why an accident happens in slow motion

Many people who get involved in motor vehicle accidents later report that it felt as if events were moving in slow motion or as if time itself slowed down.

For instance, one man recounted losing control as his car began to slide. It likely happened in seconds, but it felt far longer to him. This allowed him to stay calm. He knew that the key to ending the slide without an accident was to steer properly at the exact moment such a turn was needed. He reported waiting for the right moment and then making the maneuver, getting his car under control again.

But how was this possible? Why would someone describe an event that happens so quickly as one where they could wait for the ideal moment?

It’s really just one way that the brain tries to protect you. The area that activates during a dangerous, high-stress event may make it feel like things are happening slowly. This can increase your ability to react. You may, as that man did, have a chance to prevent harm. Over the generations of human history, this ability may have saved people in all sorts of dangerous situations, not just car accidents.

Of course, just feeling like you have more time does not mean you’ll be able to avoid a crash or avoid injury. Plus, some accidents feel incredibly sudden when you don’t see the danger coming, such as when a driver runs a red light and T-bones your car. Either way, if you suffer serious injuries, you need to know how to seek proper compensation for your injuries and losses so that you’re better able to move forward.

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