Rollover crashes are among the most deadly of all motor vehicle crashes. A vehicle is said to have been involved in a rollover crash when it tips over to the side or rolls over to its roof during a collision. Rollover crashes typically result in partial or complete ejection of the vehicle occupants, which increases the potential for catastrophic and fatal injuries. While vehicle rollovers account for only one percent of all traffic accidents nationwide, they cause one-third of all occupant deaths. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), more than 10,000 people die in rollover accidents each year in the United States.
What Causes a Rollover Accident?
- Driver Control: Whether a driver is driving aggressively, tailgating, speeding, or distracted, a variety of driver behaviors can cause a vehicle driver to lose control, leading to a rollover.
- Multi-Vehicle Crashes: A car may be hit on the side by another vehicle, causing it to turn over. The chance of a rollover crash will increase if the vehicles involved are SUVs, minivans, and large pickup trucks.
- Auto Product Defects: Design or manufacturing defects in vehicles could also lead to a rollover accident. Many vehicles today come with electronic stability control that helps prevent rollovers; however, when this feature doesn’t work properly, vehicles may be more apt to roll. Some vehicles – such as SUVs – are more likely to roll over due to their design. A high center of gravity and narrow track can make a vehicle unstable in fast turns or sharp changes of direction–increasing the odds that it will tip over once it begins to skid sideways. The problem is most pronounced in 4-wheel-drive pickup trucks and sport-utility vehicles, which have a higher ground clearance for off-road driving.
- Environmental Conditions: Most rollovers happen in rural areas with no barriers, leading to over 75% of fatal rollover crashes occurring on rural roads. Inclement road conditions – such as pavement defects, inadequate maintenance, or loose gravel – also contribute to rollovers. Bad weather conditions do not negate liability for the driver but can help cause a crash.
- Alcohol: Half of all rollover crashes involve alcohol. Even just a small amount of drugs or alcohol will impair judgment, slow your reaction time, and reduce eye-hand coordination. Drunk drivers can easily lose control of their vehicles, therefore increasing the risk of a crash.
- Tire Problems: Bald tires, flat tires, and driving on the incorrect tires for your vehicle or for the weather can result in rollover wrecks. Losing control of your vehicle is more common when your tires are worn or damaged, and are unable to keep your car safely connected to the road.
Securing Your Recovery After a Rollover Accident
If you are a driver or passenger who has been hurt or the survivor of someone who was killed, in a rollover accident, you need to know how to secure the financial recovery you need. If you were injured in a rollover accident, call Corpus Christi car accident attorney John Flood today to schedule a free consultation of your claims. We are eager to assist you immediately. Contact us today.