Sarah Regan

mbg Spirituality & Relationships Editor

By Sarah Regan

mbg Spirituality & Relationships Editor

Sarah Regan is a Spirituality & Relationships Editor, and a registered yoga instructor. She received her bachelor’s in broadcasting and mass communication from SUNY Oswego, and lives in Buffalo, New York.

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May 29, 2023

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When it comes to interpreting your dreams, so much of it depends on context and finer details—and dreaming of a car accident is no exception. Here’s what you car accident dream could be trying to tell you, including specific dream scenarios and how to work through the dream.


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What do dreams about car accidents mean?

If you’ve been dreaming about car accidents, according to professional dream interpreter Lauri Loewenberg, it’s likely that something in your life has come to a sudden (and potentially messy) stop. As she explains, “Cars take us places, they move forward, so they usually represent something in progress and moving forward, whether that’s a relationship, career project, or a health goal.”

So for the car to crash, then, represents a sudden ending—or perhaps an extended pause—on whatever that situation is in your real life. But it can also relate to literal accidents or mistakes you’ve made, with Loewenberg noting that if you “wrecked” something in your life, it would make sense to dream of wrecking your car.

And sometimes, she adds, our dreams can be a reflection of our emotional state as well. In some cases, car crash dreams can also be connected to an energetic or emotional “crash” you’re feeling in your life (i.e. feeling burned out or exhausted).

That said, here’s a deeper dive into more specific scenarios, depending on what exactly happened in your dream.


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11 common car accident dreams:


Dreaming that you crashed your car

If you’re the one driving the car when it crashed, according to Loewenberg, this dream is likely connected to something that you were previously in control of in your real life—emphasis on that past tense.

“You were steering the situation and feeling like it could be your fault, so you might be feeling some guilt too,” she explains, adding to ask yourself if there’s anything you’ve done recently that caused a mess in your life.


Dreaming of someone else causing a car accident

Now, what if you were just a passenger and someone else caused the accident? In this case, Loewenberg tells mindbodygreen you might feel like you’re “along for the ride” of someone else’s mishaps or mistakes.

This is particularly true if the driver is someone you’re involved with in real life, whether it’s a partner, friend, or family member. “Whoever is behind the wheel usually represents who the driving force of the situation is in real life,” Loewenberg adds.


Dreaming of crashing into a tree

If you dreamt you crashed into a tree, this dream could very well be speaking to a family problem. Dream symbolism often deals with word play and word associations, and we all have a “family tree” that we’re connected to.

Loewenberg explains that if you’re going through family drama and feeling like you’re about to crash and burn because of it, crashing into a tree in a dream is a reflection of that family stress.


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Dreaming of a car accident when someone is in the car with you

It’s one thing if you’re alone in the car when you crash—but according to Loewenberg, having a passenger likely means that person is involved in whatever situation this dream is mirroring in real life.

Again, this could be a partner, family member, or friend, but if they’re in the passenger seat, dreaming that you crashed while they were in the car could indicate some troubles in your relationship with that person—or even an abrupt stop to the relationship altogether.


Dreaming of a head-on car crash

According to Loewenberg, dreaming of a head-on collision typically means whatever “crash” or ending you’re experiencing in real life likely involved some sort of confrontation.

As she explains, “You might have both been coming at each other face to face, which in the dream, looks like a head on collision to represent the confrontation.”


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Dreaming that a distraction caused a car crash

What if you dreamt you crashed your car because you got distracted? “If that’s the cause of the crash,” Loewenberg tells mindbodygreen, “that would be a message from the subconscious that you’ve taken your focus off some situation or some relationship and because of that, it has crashed and burned.”

Simply put, whether it’s a job or relationship you were focusing on, if you got distracted from it in real life and caused problems for yourself, this dream is mirroring that lack of focus.


Dreaming of being rear-ended

We talked about head-on collisions, but what about being rear-ended? In this case, Loewenberg says, being rear-ended indicates something from your past is causing an issue in the present.

After all, the crash came from behind you, “and anything that’s behind us in a dream represents our past, something that we’ve tried (or should try to) put behind us” she adds.


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Dreaming of crashing your car in a ditch

According to Loewenberg, where you crash matters just as much as who you’re with or why the accident happened. And if you crashed into a ditch in the dream, it may represent feeling depressed, but could also relate to “ditching” something.

“Ditches can represent depression because they are a literal depression in the Earth, but dreams can also use wordplay, so has someone ditched you, or do you need to ditch something?” Loewenberg suggests asking yourself.


Dreaming of crashing into a tractor trailer

If you dreamt you crashed into a large tractor trailer, according to Loewenberg, this one is likely speaking to a work problem. As she explains, trucks tend to represent work in dreams, though they can also symbolize a “heavy load” you’re carrying.

“Remember that everything in the dream is some part of you, so the truck is that heavy load you’re carrying, and that is conflicting with your life in some way—your movement forward, your progress—and you might need to take some things off your metaphoric tractor trailer,” she adds.


Dreaming of a rollover car accident

As aforementioned, dreams have a funny way of using wordplay, and when else do we hear the term “roll over?” When we roll over to someone else’s demands, of course. And Loewenberg says that could be what this dream is speaking to: metaphorically “rolling over” for someone else against your own wishes.

She also notes that if you were dream you rolled over in a convertible with the top off, for instance, the convertible could signify you’re feeling particularly vulnerable or too open to getting hurt.


Dreaming of crashing into snow

Last but not least, if you dreamt you crashed into snow, the specific of that weather could be mirroring cold emotions you’re experiencing in your life, whether those emotions are your own or someone else’s.

You might have this dream “if someone around you caused you to feel frozen out, like they’re giving you the cold shoulder, causing you to feel like this relationship with this person is going to crash and burn—or you could be the one who’s grown cold and are maybe starting to lose your drive,” Loewenberg explains.

How to work through this dream

Interpreting any dream comes down to getting clear on how you felt in the dream, how you reacted to the dream plot, and how those themes connect to things you’re going through in real life.

“As always,” Loewenberg tells mindbodygreen, “look at what you thought about in the dream—what ran through your head right before the crash, the emotions you felt, if you thought you were going to die, etc.”

You’re likely aware that something in your life has come to stop or end (or is about to, soon enough), and this dream is your subconscious playing out that ending while you sleep.

“So when you’re able to identify and pinpoint the issue that the dream is connected to, you can actually still compare the situation to a car crash,” Loewenberg says, adding to ask yourself whether the situation feels “totaled” versus salvageable, and whether you need to move on and let it go, or try to rectify the situation.


What is the spiritual meaning of car accident dreams?

Car accidents in dreams relate to something in your life that has come to a sudden (and potentially messy) stop, or that may end soon. These dreams can also relate to mistakes we’ve made, and energetic or emotional crashes.

What does it mean to dream about car accident with family?

Dreaming about a car accident with family would signify some sort of family drama, or even an ending within the family (i.e. a divorce or death).

What does a head-on car crash dream mean?

Dreaming about a head-on car crash typically represents a problem in your life that involves some sort of face-to-face confrontation with another person.

The takeaway

Dreams can certainly be mysterious and nuanced, so only you can unpack their true meanings. But when it comes to common dream symbols, car accidents are one of them, and understanding these associations can help us pin down what our dreams could be trying to communicate.