While not common, rollover crashes are still extremely dangerous. Any time a car rolls over onto its side or upside down, there’s a high chance that the people involved are seriously injured.
It can seem impossible to flip your car, but it becomes more likely in certain situations. There are many negligent behaviors that lead to rollover accidents, and they should be avoided at all costs.
We’ll go over what causes rollover auto accidents, how to avoid them, and what to do if you end up in one.
Common Causes of Rollover Car Accidents
Rollover auto accidents don’t happen randomly. There are specific actions a driver takes that usually result in a serious accident that results in injury. Because there are multiple ways to cause a rollover crash, it can be difficult to prove exactly what caused the crash.
• Reckless driving: The faster you’re going, the more difficult it is to control your vehicle. If you attempted to make a turn or are involved in an accident, it’s more likely for your car to flip. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 40% of all rollover crashes involved speeding.
• Driving under the influence: Intoxicated driving is dangerous in every respect. Your reaction time is slowed, your judgment is hindered, and you have less control over your motor functions. It’s no wonder then that nearly 50% of rollover crashes involved intoxicated drivers.
• Distracted driving: With today’s technology entering our cars, it’s easier than ever to be distracted. You can text, play music loudly, talk with friends and eat on your way home. Anything that takes your eyes off the road can increase your chance of rolling your car in an accident.
• Vehicle defects: Regular maintenance for your vehicle is important. If something were to go wrong, like a tire blowout, then your vehicle could flip.
• Type of vehicle: Different cars have different centers of gravity. While a sedan might be difficult to roll over, an SUV or pickup truck is more likely to flip in the right conditions. This is especially true for lifted vehicles that are top-heavy.
How to Avoid a Rollover Vehicle Crash
When a car flips over during an accident, it’s usually due to negligence from the driver. To avoid a rollover auto accident, you should follow traffic laws and these steps.
• Drive within the speed limit: The posted speed limit is there for a reason. Reckless driving reduces your ability to respond to the road, increasing your chances of a rollover accident. Be sure to drive within the speed limit on any roads you’re on.
• Never drink and drive: You can keep yourself and your passengers safe by only driving when sober. If you’ve had a few drinks, be sure to have a sober person drive or use a rideshare app to get home safely.
• Regularly check your vehicle: Pay attention to your car. If you notice any “check engine” lights or odd sounds, take your car to a mechanic when possible. The sooner you get these issues checked out, the less likely you will be in an accident due to a tire blowout or other mechanical issues.
• Always pay attention: While it’s easy to get distracted while driving, it’s important to always have your eyes on the road. You won’t have enough time to react to any changes in traffic or sudden turns.
• Understand your vehicle: Every car has a different center of gravity. Always remember to drive within your vehicle’s limits. So, if you have a pickup truck or a raised vehicle, you should take sharp turns slowly and be careful of car accidents on the road.
Above all else, be responsible while driving. No matter the time of day or what type of road you’re on, you should always be alert and respect traffic laws. To ignore any of these tips is to put yourself and others in serious danger.
What to do if You’re Involved in a Rollover Auto Accident
Rollover car accidents are dangerous and shocking. They can be scary and difficult to process. That’s why it’s important to know the best steps to take if your car flips over in an accident.
• Stay calm: Take a moment to collect yourself. You’ve just been involved in a serious accident. Process the events and take time to collect your thoughts.
• Check yourself and passengers: Be sure to check yourself and your passengers for any injuries. Go to the hospital to be evaluated for any health issues you may be experiencing.
• Exit Vehicle: It’s important to try and exit the vehicle. This can be difficult, especially if you are injured. But if you can, leaving the car gives you the chance to call for help and better assess the situation. Help your passengers or any other parties involved.
• Call for help: Call 911 on your cell phone or flag down someone on the road who can. From here, an emergency professional can talk you through the process and find your accident. They can send an ambulance to attend to any serious injuries.
The Next Steps
After a serious accident like a car rollover, you need to have yourself checked out by a medical professional. Even if you don’t feel hurt, there could be a delayed injury that a physician can identify.
You should also contact an experienced auto accident attorney. While rollover cases can be complicated, a skilled lawyer can help you determine if you have a case.
If you live in Richmond, VA, you should contact the auto accident attorneys at Epperly & Follis. With decades of combined experience, we bring unique expertise and determination to your case. We fight not only for your rights but for the ability to return to your normal life.
Contact us to schedule your consultation today.