Rollover accidents account for a significant portion of motor vehicle fatalities and can be devastating when they occur. A rollover occurs when a vehicle turns over onto its side or roof, usually after losing control on the road. Fortunately, in this article, we will discuss 10 safety tips that drivers can utilize to reduce their risk of being involved in a rollover accident.
Current National Rollover Accident Statistics
In the United States, rollover accidents account for a significant portion of motor vehicle fatalities. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), around 10,000 people are killed each year in rollover-related crashes. This accounts for nearly one-third of all traffic deaths in the U.S., making it one of the leading causes of death on American roads. Furthermore, out of those individuals who died in rollover crashes, almost 60 percent were not wearing their seatbelts - highlighting the importance of buckle up laws and seatbelt use amongst drivers and passengers alike.
5 Most Common Causes of Rollover Accidents
Rollover accidents are some of the most dangerous and damaging types of car crashes. While they often occur in isolated incidents, there are several common causes of rollover accidents that can lead to severe injury or even death. Understanding the most common causes of rollover accidents can help drivers be more aware. Below are the 5 most common causes:
1. Speeding: Excessive speed is one of the leading causes of rollover accidents. By speeding, drivers are more likely to lose control of their vehicle, resulting in a higher risk of rolling over.
2. Unsafe Lane Changes or Merging: Sudden lane changes or merging can cause vehicles to become unstable and roll over, especially when driving at high speeds. It is important for drivers to merge carefully and signal in advance when switching lanes.
3. Side Impact: Side impacts from other vehicles can also cause rollover accidents. When a vehicle is struck on the side at high speed, this can create enough force to cause the vehicle to roll. This is especially true if the vehicle being struck is tall and narrow, such as a SUV.
4. Road Conditions: Poor road conditions such as potholes, ice and debris can cause drivers to swerve or lose control of their vehicle, leading to a higher risk of rolling over. Drivers should be mindful of these potential hazards when traveling.
5. Tire Defects: Tire defects can also lead to rollover accidents. Tires that are worn or underinflated can make it harder for a driver to maintain control, thus increasing the chance of a rollover accident occurring. It is important for drivers to regularly inspect their tires and ensure they are in good condition before taking them out on the road.
There are several other causes of car rollovers that can be attributed to driver error, such as:
- Being overly tired or falling asleep at the wheel
- Texting and driving, not paying attention to traffic signals or other drivers, rubbernecking
- Driving under influence of drugs or alcohol
- High-risk behavior like speeding and tailgating
- Incorrect steering maneuvers
- Overcrowded cargo weight capacity
- Lack of experience in operating a vehicle
- Not being familiar with the local roads
Rollover accidents can be extremely dangerous, and understanding the most common causes can help drivers avoid them. By being aware of these risks and driving safely, motorists can help prevent rollovers and stay safe on the roads.
Tripped Vs. Untripped Rollover Accidents
When it comes to rollover crashes, there are two general types: tripped and untripped. A tripped rollover is caused when a vehicle encounters an obstacle or force - such as a curb, guardrail, another car, etc. - that causes it to suddenly flip onto its side. On the other hand, an untripped rollover typically occurs when a driver takes a sharp turn at excessive speed, leading to the vehicle's center of gravity being shifted outside of its wheelbase and causing the car to tip over.
It is important to consider both types of rollovers individually in order to better understand their individual risks and potential causes. According to NHTSA data, around 95 percent of all fatal single-vehicle rollover crashes are untripped, while tripped rollover crashes account for the remaining 5 percent. Furthermore, certain vehicles - such as vans, SUVs and pickup trucks - have higher rates of untripped rollovers due to their shape and center of gravity. For this reason, it is important to consider these types of vehicles when talking about rollover accident prevention.
The statistics surrounding rollover accidents demonstrate just how dangerous they can be and why drivers should take extra precautions on the road. Wearing a seatbelt, driving at safe speeds and avoiding any sudden turns or maneuvers are some of the best ways to prevent a potentially deadly rollover crash from occurring.
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Injuries Associated With Rollover Car Accidents
In addition to causing fatalities, rollovers also result in severe injuries for those lucky enough to survive them. NHTSA indicates that 1.5 million people are injured in rollover crashes every year .
These accidents can lead to a wide range of injuries, such as:
1. Traumatic Brain Injuries
2. Spinal Cord Damage
3. Broken Bones
4. Head Injuries
5. Neck Injuries
6. Chest Injuries
7. Limb Amputations
8. Internal Injuries
These types of injuries can be devastating for victims who may be unable to work or participate in activities they once enjoyed. In some cases, victims may suffer from long-term pain or even permanent disability resulting from the crash.
Treatment for these injuries can involve extensive rehabilitation and physical therapy along with medications for pain management. The emotional toll taken by these injuries can be just as severe, with victims often facing depression and anxiety as they try to adjust to their new reality.
In addition, there are potential long-term effects that should not be overlooked. Survivors of rollovers often suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and can have difficulty with physical activities.
How Vehicle Design Contributes To Rollover Accidents
The types of vehicles commonly involved in these accidents also highlight their prevalence - SUVs and pickup trucks are more likely to be involved due to their higher center of gravity, which increases their risk of flipping over during an accident. As a result, it is important for drivers to exercise extra caution when operating these kind of vehicles.
In addition, making sure these vehicles are well maintained and properly equipped, driving cautiously in inclement weather, and avoiding distracted driving or other dangerous behaviors can help reduce the risk of rollover accidents. Although modern vehicles are equipped with technologies to help mitigate the risk of rollover accidents, these features can only do so much. The human element still plays a major role in the prevention of these dangerous accidents, so it's important for drivers to do their part.
Finally, vehicle manufacturers need to be aware of how their designs contribute to this type of accident. Making improvements in the structural design of vehicles, such as adding additional reinforcements or lowering the center of gravity, can make a major difference in the safety of these vehicles.
Safety Tips for Reducing the Risk of Rollover Accidents
Rollover accidents can be incredibly dangerous and even fatal, making it important to follow these safety tips below to reduce your risk.
- KEEP vehicle up-to-date on safety regulations. Every year, life-saving technologies are created to protect motorists and passengers if an accident takes place. As these safety measures become updated, it is critical that older automobiles comply with the modern standards of protection. Specifically, ensure your vehicle meets the minimum Electronic Stability Control specifications-- a paramount factor in avoiding rollover collisions!
- Check tires often. Proper tire maintenance is essential to avoiding rollover accidents, as impaired or worn tires make it near impossible for you to remain in control of the car.
- Only replace your tires with similar type tires to the original. It may be tempting to upgrade to performance tires when it's time for a new set of wheels, but the additional lateral grip can increase your chances of rollover in an emergency situation. Keep this in mind and use caution if you choose to go with these specialized tires.
- DON'T overload your vehicle. Vehicle overload can be dangerous and it decreases a vehicle’s stability. SUVs and pickups are the most vulnerable to rolling over due to their higher center of gravity. To ensure safe travel, it is important to stay within the load ratings set by the manufacturer and distribute the cargo evenly with the heaviest objects being place near the floor and close to the center.
- DON'T speed. Excessive speed increases the risk of a car involved in a crash rolling over. Statistics reveal that almost 40 percent of fatal rollover accidents are due to exceeding the speed limit.
- Avoid distracted driving. Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of roadway accidents. In order to prevent your vehicle from becoming involved in a potentially perilous accident, it is important to stay focused on the road at all times. Removing distractions such as cell phone use and eating behind the wheel can help you maintain control of your vehicle and make sure that you are alert and responsive to any potential danger. By avoiding distractions, you can ensure that your attention is directed where it should be - on the road.
- Handle corners carefully. Taking a turn at high speeds can be dangerous, as it puts extra strain on the tires and can cause the car to become unbalanced and tip over. To safely handle corners at high speed, you should reduce your speed before entering a turn, steer through it in one smooth motion, and accelerate out of the corner once you are past the apex.
- Be extra cautious on rural highways. Drivers need to pay extra attention when travelling on rural roads with a speed limit of more than 55 mph, as they pose an elevated risk of rollover-related fatal accidents. These highways frequently lack dividers or barriers and make up almost 75% of all fatalities related to rollovers.
- DON'T panic when steering. Panic while steering can be particularly dangerous, as overcorrecting can quickly lead to a rollover and loss of control when traveling quickly on the highway. If you find yourself in an unexpected or dicey situation while driving, it is important to avoid making sudden drastic movements that cause your vehicle to swerve or spin out of control.
- DON'T drink and drive. Driving under the influence can have severe consequences and is a serious public safety risk. Nearly half of all rollover crashes are caused by someone operating a vehicle while impaired. To keep yourself and others safe, it's important to remember that drinking alcohol affects your judgement, reaction time and coordination – all of which are necessary for driving safely.
In conclusion, reducing the chances of rolling over in a car accident can be accomplished by following these several safety tips above.
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What to Do After Being Involved in a Rollover Accident
If you have been involved in a rollover accident, there are several things that you should do to protect your health, safety and legal rights.
First, seek medical attention right away. Even if you do not think your injuries are serious, it is important to get checked out immediately in case there are any hidden or delayed symptoms of injury. The sooner you receive treatment for a potential injury, the better your chances are for avoiding long-term complications.
Second, document the accident scene and all evidence from the crash site thoroughly. Take pictures of the vehicles involved in the rollover accident and take note of skid marks and other debris that could indicate fault for the collision. Other factors such as time of day, weather conditions and road conditions should also be noted down as well.
Third, contact an experienced personal injury attorney immediately after seeking medical attention following a rollover crash. An attorney will help you understand your legal rights and help ensure that all parties responsible for the accident are held accountable.
It is also important to not speak with any insurance companies or other party's lawyers without first consulting with a personal injury lawyer. Insurance companies may offer settlements in an attempt to avoid paying out full compensation, but it is likely that these settlements amount to far less than what you may actually be entitled to due to the severity of your injuries and losses. Do not accept any settlement offers without consulting with an experienced attorney first.
Finally, keep detailed records of all medical treatments related to the rollover accident, including doctors’ reports, hospital bills and medications prescribed following the incident. These documents will be important for your personal injury claim.
By taking these steps, you can help ensure that all of your rights are protected following a rollover accident and that you receive the compensation you are entitled to.
How A Car Accident Lawyer Will Help You After Your Rollover Accident
If you or someone you know has been involved in a serious car accident, contact an experienced personal injury attorney today for legal guidance and representation. A qualified lawyer can review your case and help ensure that those at fault for the rollover collision are held accountable so that the victims can recover financially from the losses they have suffered due to no fault of their own. Don’t wait; seek legal advice as soon as possible after being involved in a rollover incident.
A good lawyer is going to help you take care of all of your issues and it will be easy for you to take care of your needs when you have a lawyer you trust. Rollover car accidents are scary and you want to try to avoid them. If you get into an accident that isn't your fault you will want to make sure that you speak with a good lawyer right away so you can get the help that you need from the lawyer.
For Rollover Accidents in South Florida - Contact Beharry Law
Rollover accidents can lead to serious and life-threatening injuries. It is important to contact an experienced rollover accident attorney who understands the complexities of rollover accident cases. Beharry Law is a South Florida personal injury law firm with experience in representing victims of all types of car accidents throughout South Florida. Beharry Law will provide expert legal advice, thorough investigation and aggressive representation to help you get the best possible outcome for your case. Don't wait - contact Beharry Law today for a free consultation if you or someone you know has been involved in a rollover accident in South Florida. Get the justice you deserve! Do not hesitate - call (305)615-5959 now!
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the most common cause of a rollover accident?
The most common cause of rollover accidents is a side collision or a vehicle going off road. When the driver over corrects or tries to swerve to avoid an obstacle, the car can trip over its own wheels and cause it to roll over.
How common are rollover accidents?
Rollover accidents are becoming increasingly common in the U.S., with an estimated 200,000 involving injury or death each year. In fact, they account for around 35% of all passenger vehicle fatalities in the country and more than 10,000 of those deaths were due to rollover collisions alone.
Why do 78% of rollover accidents happen?
Rollover accidents typically occur due to the driver's behavior and poor decision-making. The most common causes of rollover accidents include driving too fast for conditions, intoxication, incorrect payload management, lane shifting without signaling, over-correcting a skid or turning excessively sharp or abruptly.
What happens to your body in a rollover accident?
When a vehicle rolls over during an accident, the interior of the car can become a danger zone for occupants. Due to the centrifugal force exerted during the rollover, passengers can be catapulted into the roof or window, experiencing severe traumatic injuries including spinal injuries, whiplash, contusions or fractures. Additionally, seat belts and airbags may malfunction or fail completely in rollover accidents leaving passengers exposed to extreme physical barrage by objects within their car.
What vehicles have the highest rollover risk?
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), tall vehicles such as SUVs, pickups, and vans have a higher rollover risk than passenger cars. Of all the types of vehicles, small SUVs have the highest rollover risk at about three times that of passenger cars.
Can you survive a car rollover?
The odds of survival can be increased if you take the right precautions. Always wear a seatbelt and keep your head up during a rollover. Also, know where your exits are ahead of time and make sure to unbuckle your seatbelt before you try to exit the vehicle in case it has fallen into water or flames.