A rollover car accidentusually involves a single vehicle and falls into one of two categories: tripped or un-tripped. During a tripped rollover, the vehicle hits an object that causes it to lose balance and start rolling, usually on its side. This could include an embankment or guard rail. A tripped rollover accident makes up the bulk of all rollover incidents. Un-tripped rollover incidents are extremely rare. During an un-tripped rollover, the driver loses control of the vehicle while trying to avoid hitting another vehicle or object. The rapid swerving action makes the vehicle unstable. As the vehicle veers away, the tires lose connection with the ground and the vehicle starts to roll uncontrollably.
No matter the type, each rollover accident can cause significant injuries and property damage. Rollover accidents are one of the deadliest collisions. After a rollover accident, a victim should speak to a lawyer about their legal options.
What Actions Cause Rollover Car Crashes?
Rollover accidents can happen for a variety of reasons. Some rollover collisions involve poor driver judgment, but drivers are not always at fault for rollover incidents. Common causes of rollover car crashes include:
Tire issues. Tires should grip the pavement just enough to keep a car safely in motion and grounded. Poorly inflated tires may contribute to rollover accidents because the tire treads cannot provide stability. Defective tires can be equally as dangerous.
Fast driving. Speeding is a main cause of rollover accidents. The faster the vehicle goes, the harder it will be to steer.
Center of gravity. Some vehicles have a high center of gravity, such as SUVs, transit vans, and commercial trucks. The higher the center of gravity of a vehicle, the more likely that an accident could lead to a rollover event.
Crash location. Most rollover accidents occur on rural roads with generous speed limits, two lanes going in opposite directions, and curves.
Distracted driving. Distractions lead to all kinds of roadway accidents. Looking down at a text message can take the driver’s attention off of the road.
Impaired driving. Impaired drivers are statistically more likely to get into accidents, including rollover crashes.
Inclement weather. The weather can contribute to any type of crash. Wet, slippery, or icy roads create conditions that may cause a rollover accident.
What Types of Injuries Occur in Rollover Crashes?
After a rollover incident, victims may require emergency treatment for a number of injuries. Common rollover accident injuries include:
Traumatic brain injuries. During a violent rollover collision, the brain may hit against the skull repeatedly. This can lead to anything from a mild concussion to bleeding in the brain. Although some traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are acute and treatable, others may lead to permanent damage, memory loss, mood swings, personality changes, loss of motor function, and permanent disabilities. Learn more about TBIs here.
Broken or crushed bones. Victims of rollover accidents commonly report broken bones. Any bone in the body may be broken, depending upon how long the rollover incident occurs and where the victim was seated at the time.
Internal bruising and bleeding. Car manufacturers have added various safety features to their vehicles to limit the chances of car accident victims getting crushed and trapped. However, crashes that involve rollover events can lead to victims getting moved into dangerous positions that affect internal organs.
Depending upon the location and depth of the cut, the results could be life-threatening.
Spinal cord injuries. The spinal cord is durable, but it cannot withstand the forces of a rollover accident. If a victim’s spinal cord is severely damaged, the victim may end up with partial or complete paralysis.
How can I Avoid a Rollover Collision?
It is not feasible to stop all accidents from happening. However, when possible, drivers should take the time and effort to apply the following safety tips:
Follow the posted speed limits. Following posted speed limits gives drivers enough time to react to obstacles and emergencies.
Check tire pressure regularly. Tires should be routinely examined to make sure they are road-ready.
Do not drive when distracted, fatigued, or under the influence. Taking a cab, calling a rideshare company, or asking a friend for a ride makes more sense than risking a tripped or un-tripped rollover accident.
Wear a seat belt. Seat belts help keep victims stabilized during rollover accidents. Without seat belts, victims may be thrown from their vehicles.
Do not overload vehicles. Overloading the carrying capacity of any vehicle changes its center of gravity and ability to stay upright while operating.
Go slowly around curves. Un-tripped rollover incidents can happen on curved roads, especially when drivers go too fast.
What Should I Do After a Rollover Accident?
Drivers who get into rollover accidents should immediately assess their ability to safely get out of the vehicle. If they feel tremendous pain, are trapped in the seat, or think they may have broken a body part, they should stay and wait for help. Victims who walk away from rollovers should stay with their vehicles after calling 9-1-1.
When first responders arrive, drivers should take advantage of medical treatment in addition to answering any questions from law enforcement. However, drivers should avoid admitting fault. If possible, drivers should document the scene with images and videos to help with future claims.
Anyone who has been seriously hurt in a rollover crash who received an unsatisfactory settlement offer, may want to speak with a car accident lawyer. Paying for medical bills can be costly, even for people who have decent health care insurance coverage. A lawyer can help a victim collect damages.
Millsboro Car Accident Lawyers at Jacobs & Crumplar, P.A. Work on Behalf of Clients Injured in Rollover Accidents