So...I was in a major car accident two weeks ago of which I am still recovering. The California Highway Patrol officer is trying to piece together the accident and determine fault. I am hoping that some T types (and others) with knowledge of physics and how kinetic energy and all that good stuff works can help me to understand the situation.
I was the passenger in a car driving eastward at approximately 35 mph through an intersection.
The driver of the other car (traveling northerly) states that he had just begun going through his green light at about 5 mph when he collided with my car.
My car sustained major damage (a $25,000 2010 car considered a total loss by my insurance) to my (the passenger) side doors and front wheel area. The door is bent inward, and the other car's license plate is stuck in between the hinging part of the door that connects it with the front end.
The other driver states that his car sustained damage only to his left front bumper.
The CHP officer states that this is all possible because of "transference", that we were driving faster than the other car and therefore when he hit us, it caused us more damage.
This makes no sense to me. If anything, wouldn't our force be transferred to the other guy's car? Plus, how could only his front left bumper be damaged if his license plate is stuck in my car!? (The latter question is rhetorical...the guy is obviously misstating his damage).
In my mind, I cannot see how the other driver could have possibly been driving 5 mph considering the damage to the car (and me...I sustained a concussion, sprained ankle, and severely bruised knees)! If anything, it seems that he would have been driving over the posted speed limit of 25 mph.
What do you guys think? How does this work?