What Causes SUV Rollover Motor Vehicle Accidents
Many times, a person will invest in purchasing a sport utility vehicle (SUV) because of the perception that he and his family would be safer in the SUV than in a regular passenger vehicle. However, this may not be true. Some SUVs have poorly designed bodies that lead to instability, there may not be sufficient roof support or suspension systems to protect the driver and passengers, and the braking system may not be sufficient for the size and weight of the vehicle.
In addition to perceived safety benefits, drivers like the fact that SUVs are higher off the ground than many other vehicles on the road, which provides greater visibility across the roadway. However, there is a downside to this benefit. The taller SUV has a higher center of gravity, but often does not have the wheel base to accommodate the load when the SUV makes a sudden maneuver, leading to a rollover motor vehicle accident. These types of accidents pose a threat to the driver and passengers of the SUV, but also jeopardize other vehicles on the road, as well as pedestrians. However, the vast majority of SUV rollover accidents are single vehicle events. Severe injuries such as traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord damage, lower cervical neck fractures, loss of limbs, and broken or crushed bones are all-too-common in an SUV rollover accident.
There are four common types of SUV rollover accidents that lead to serious injuries or fatalities:
- Ramp rollovers – This type of accident happens when the SUV has one or more tires travel up onto a ramp, curb, or other elevated surface, leading to an imbalance in the vehicle.
- Lateral force rollovers – When an SUV is traveling at an excessive rate of speed, it may not be able to navigate a sharp turn or curve in the road because of its high center of gravity.
- Side-slope rollovers – A rollover of this type may occur when an SUV is being used in an off-road capacity and it travels on a sloping surface, causing enough of an imbalance to topple the vehicle. This also can occur if the SUV travels of the side of a roadway onto an upward or downward slope.
- Sideways skid rollovers – If the SUV goes into a skid because of loss of traction in the rear tires, often referred to as fishtailing, the vehicle may impact a curb or other barrier and the force of the contact is enough to push the SUV into a rollover. These types of accidents usually happen in inclement weather, when the roads are wet or icy.
Rollover motor vehicle accidents lead to a greater number of fatalities than those accidents where the vehicle did not rollover. SUVs and passenger vans are much more likely to rollover than a passenger car. SUV rollover accidents lead approximately 10,000 serious injuries or fatalities each year. On average, three percent of accidents involve the rollover of the vehicle; however, these rollovers account for approximately one-third of the deaths on occupants in a passenger vehicle. Rollover truck accidents are a significant problem and SUVs are involved in many of those accidents.
A victim of an SUV or other vehicle rollover accident likely has suffered severe injuries and now faces the stress of unpaid bills and a loss of income. The dedicated auto accident attorneys at Lundy Law represent clients who have been injured in rollovers in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware with compassion and commitment. We want you to have the best possible legal representation, so we offer a No Fee Assurance, which means that you do not pay any fees and costs unless we win your case. We are available to discuss the devastating accident that you experienced and the best legal strategy to meet your goals and needs. We are ready to talk to you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so call us at 1-800-LundyLaw, or complete our free online consultation form.