Vehicle rollovers are relatively uncommon compared to most other types of accidents, yet they account for a significant percentage of traffic fatalities. This degree of danger is why so many auto manufacturers have invested heavily in rollover avoidance technologies and in vehicle designs and safety systems that reduce the potential for this danger.
How rollovers happen
Just about any vehicle can roll over in the proper circumstances, but vehicles that are taller and narrower (pickups, vans, SUVs) are more likely to roll over than standard sedans and passenger cars due to their higher center of gravity.
These types of vehicles need to be particularly careful with their speeds when dealing with sideways forces, such as rounding a curve. Lateral forces in these settings increase with speed, so taking a turn to sharp and then overcorrecting can result in the vehicle rolling over, depending on the speed and type of vehicle.
Usually it’s not just improper steering that results in the rollover. The vehicle will also likely “trip” on something, such as a pothole, curb, debris or soft shoulder on the side of the road. The FMCSA indicates a massive majority of rollovers are a result of these trips combined with high speeds.
Vehicle manufacturers have developed ways to make taller vehicles less prone to rollovers, including using tires with less grip. Too much tire grip can allow these lateral forces to build up until the vehicle flips, so while it may seem counterintuitive, it’s important not to have too much friction between the tires and the road.
To learn about the legal steps you should take if you’ve been injured in a rollover accident, contact an experienced Bradenton, FL personal injury lawyer at Goldman, Babboni, Fernandez & Walsh.