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What Happens in a Rollover Crash?

Posted on behalf of Harbin & Burnett on Mar 11, 2014 in Auto Accidents

Rollover crashes are recognized as the most fatal form of automobile accident in the United States. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) states that rollover crashes have higher fatality rates that all other forms of accidents. In 2010, there were 9.1 million passenger vehicle, pickup, SUV and van accidents, while 2.1 percent involved a rollover; however, rollovers accounted for almost 35 percent of all fatalities from passenger vehicle accidents. Throughout 2010, over 7,600 people were fatally injured in rollover accidents.

How does a rollover accident occur?

There are a variety of factors that may be present during a rollover crash, including environmental factors, road condition, vehicle type and the drivers behaviors. While all automobiles are able to rollover, typically the taller and narrower vehicles with a higher center of gravity are prone to rollovers. According to the NHTSA, over 40 percent of fatal rollover accidents involve excessive speeding, while 75 percent of those took place in a location where the posted speed limit was 55 miles per hour or more.

In addition, drugs and alcohol are common causes of rollover crashes, and almost half of all accidents involve alcohol. Distracted driving, rural roads, and careless drivers often play a part in fatal accidents as well.

Tripped Rollover

A tripped rollover occurs when an external object causes the automobile to rollover. This may include striking a curb, digging into soft ground, striking a guard-rail, contacting a steep incline or decline, or colliding with another automobile. In fact, 95 percent of single-vehicle rollover crashes are tripped, according to the NHTSA.

Rollover Accident Liability

Across our nation there are millions of vehicles exposing people to the risk of a fatal collision. While new technology such as electronic stability may help the driver control their vehicle in certain conditions, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has still noted that some models need improvements. Furthermore, there are still millions of older model vehicles traveling on our roads without these added safety features.

When rollover crashes occur, they will typically result in broken bones, traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, internal injuries, whiplash, head injuries, lacerations, rib and torso injuries, and broken glass injuries. Furthermore, if the vehicle flips and catches fire or leaks fluid, it can lead to burn injuries.

When an accident victim must prove liability, a rollover accident lawyer can help to determine what happened. Passengers traveling in the vehicle at the time of the accident may also be eligible to receive compensation from the negligent driver. A driver may also be able to recover compensation from any companies associated with the other driver, malfunctions, or safety design flaws of the vehicle.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a rollover crash caused by a negligent driver, contact a rollover accident lawyer right away to determine what your legal rights are. You may be entitled to compensation for property damage, medical expenses and more.

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