Road accidents cause catastrophic injuries and claim nearly 35,000 lives each ear in the USA. A rollover accident is when a vehicle tips due to any given factor and rolls over. Some cases have seen a car rolling over several times before settling in.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA), rollover accidents only account for 2% of all accidents in the US. However, rollover accident injuries are one of the fatal ones and are responsible for 7,000 lives each year.
In this article, we will discuss:
- What causes a rollover accident?
- What are the injuries one can suffer if involved in a rollover accident?
- How can you stay safe from rollover accidents?
- What to do If I Have Suffered A Rollover Accident?
What Causes a Vehicle to Rollover?
There are several causes of vehicles to roll over, but generally, they involve human error. The error can be of the driver or an outside force. Whatever the reason, a rollover happens due to the car’s tire tripping over an object, including side curbs, speed bumps, or soft shoulders. A vehicle aggressively overtaking you can also cause you to lose control and disbalance the weight of your vehicle.
These are the most common factors of rollover accidents except some rare reasons:
- Overspeeding on curbs
- Improper lane changes
- Reckless driving
- Drunk driving
- Drowsy driving
- Texting while driving and other distractions
Rollover accidents can also happen due to natural factors. They can include:
- High center of gravity (common in Trucks, SUVs, and minivans)
- Tire failure
- High winds
- Dangerous road construction
What Type of Injuries Can a Rollover Cause?
Rollover accidents can cause your body to experience impacts on different parts, and the injuries caused by those impacts can be of several degrees. The severity of injuries depends on factors such as whether the passengers were wearing a seatbelt, how many times the vehicle tripped, etc. However, a rollover accident can result in:
- Spinal cord injuries. These injuries are the most common type in rollover accidents due to sudden movements and inertia; the spine can undergo traumatic damage. Spinal cord injuries can also lead to paralysis, which can be temporary or permanent.
- Brain and head damage. These include skull fractures, traumatic brain injury, concussions, and contusions. A passenger’s head is the most exposed body part in accidents which can hit the side post, steering wheel, window, and roof. Head injuries can lead to severe conditions like coma, memory loss, and loss of limb functionality.
- Internal bleeding. One of the most dangerous kinds of injuries in accidents, internal injuries cause organs to bleed into the abdomen. The impact of this can be sudden as internal bleeding is hard to notice. Unless the victim receives immediate medical attention, internal bleeding often leads to death.
Other injuries a passenger can suffer in rollover accidents include:
- Multiple fractures
- Loss of limbs
- Scarring caused by broken glass and metal
How to Stay Safe from Rollover Accidents?
Staying completely safe from rollover accidents seems a vague idea. You can ensure that you drive well and do everything perfectly, but it is impossible to control others’ actions and natural causes. However, you can take certain measures to minimize the damage of rollover accidents.
Always wear a seatbelt. NCSA reports, “nearly three-fourths of occupants killed in rollover crashes were not using restraints and slightly less than two-thirds of them were completely ejected from the vehicle.” A commonly unknown fact is that passengers need to wear seatbelts for the airbags to work properly. The pressure that the seatbelt sustains from pulling in an accident activates the mechanism of airbags.
Avoid overloading your vehicle. Loose items in your car can be fatal during rollovers. Make sure there are only important objects inside the car and are well-secured. You should use the trunk or your hatchback to store whatever items you can. Many accidents on highways and freeways occur due to people loading the car’s roof with luggage. This decreases the vehicle’s stability, leading to vehicles rolling over.
Purchase vehicles with better stability and security. A car’s safety is an important feature to consider when shelling out thousands of dollars. You can upgrade your vehicle’s security and stability, but there is always a limit on how much you can upgrade. You will find vehicles with the best safety features more expensive than others, but it is better to spend a little more than to suffer dangerous injuries and loss of property as well.
Other measures you can take to stay safe from rollover accidents are:
- Make sure you have working airbags
- Do not over speed
- Check your tire pressure
- Don’t drink and drive
- Don’t text and drive
- Keep space between other vehicles
What to do If I Have Suffered A Rollover Accident?
Unfortunately, despite taking all the safety and security measures, you can still suffer a rollover accident or any kind of accident. After suffering an accident, the first step you should take is to seek medical attention. Notifying the authorities is also necessary, but you might not be in the mental state to remember this. Don’t worry about this as authorities find their way to you one way or the other.
However, you should not delay getting medical attention even if you think the injuries are not extensive. Some injuries are internal and may not show symptoms immediately. They can cause underlying damage, which can be fatal if not treated urgently.
These are the causes and damages you may face in a rollover accident. Injuries caused by these accidents can be life-threatening and can cause significant damage to you and your property. If you are involved in a rollover accident, you can seek help from a personal injury lawyer. A lawyer will help you understand the injury claim you can make to compensate for your loss.