Is a person who dies as the result of being struck by a car regarded as a martyr?
The one who dies as the result of being struck by a car may attain the reward of a martyr in two cases:
1 – If he dies as the result of bleeding in his stomach, in which case he would be called al-mabtoon (one who is stricken with a disease or injury in the stomach), whether he was in a car or walking or standing, and he was struck by a car. This is according to the view of some scholars, who say that the mabtoon is the one who dies because of any trouble in the stomach, no matter what it is.
It was narrated from Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The martyrs are five: the one who dies of the plague; the one who dies of stomach trouble (al-mabtoon); the one who drowns; the one who is crushed by a falling wall; and the martyr who dies for the sake of Allaah.”
Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 2674; Muslim, 1914.
In an addition narrated by al-Tirmidhi (1846), Abu Dawood (311) and Ibn Maajah (2803) it says: “… and the one who dies of pleurisy, and the woman who dies together (with her baby).”
Al-Nawawi said: … According to another report: “The plague is martyrdom for every Muslim.”
Al-mabtoon is the one who suffers from a stomach complaint, namely diarrhoea. Al-Qaadi said: It was said that it is dropsy and swelling of the stomach. And it was said that it refers to the one who suffers from a stomach complaint. And it was said that it refers to the one who dies of a stomach complaint of any kind.
The one who drowns is the one who dies from drowning in water; the one who is crushed by a falling wall means the one who dies beneath it; the one who dies of pleurisy is the one who suffers from inflammation in his side, internally. Burning refers to the one who dies in a fire. The women who dies together (with her baby) refers to a woman who dies during pregnancy along with her child, or it was said: one who dies a virgin. The former is the correct view.
Sharh Muslim, 13/63.
2 – If the person dies as the result of a crash, whether he died inside the car or outside. This may be likened to the one who is crushed by a falling wall, mentioned in the hadeeth quoted above.
The scholars of the Standing Committee were asked:
Some people say that a person who dies as the result of a car accident is a martyr and he will have a reward like that of the martyrs. Is this correct or not?
We hope that he will be a martyr, because this is like the Muslim who dies under a falling wall. It was narrated in a saheeh report from the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) that such a person is a martyr. Fataawa al-Lajnah al-Daa’imah, 8/375.
The bounty of Allaah is immense, and we hope that this person will be a martyr, but we cannot be certain of that.
We ask Allaah to give us a good end, and to protect us from a bad death. And Allaah knows best.