SUVs Now Less Expected for Rollover Crashes

Posted on by in Auto Accidents

The modern SUVs continue to go through continuous transformations as a response to the worries that they may represent a risk of rolling over - one of the rationalities behind this possibility, finding its basis in geometry.

So, vehicle manufacturers came up with a system that would reduce the rollover risk: the Electronic Stability Control (ESC).

The Miami SUV rollover accident lawyer Sean M. Cleary has a lot of experience with personal injury cases caused by motor vehicle accidents.

What is ESC and How Does it Work?

The Electronic Stability Control is known by many names: Electronic Stability Program (for Audi, Mercedes, Saab an VW), Dynamic Stability Control (for BMW, Land Rover and Jaguar), StabiliTrak (for Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet and Pontiac), AdvanceTrac (Ford and Lincoln), Vehicle Dynamics Control (Subaru, Nissan), DSTC (Volvo) or Stability Management System (for Porsche).

It was introduced in the United States in 1997 and results have shown it to be highly effective, notably lowering fatal single-vehicle accidents by 63% and fatal single-vehicle rollovers by 88% (according to Dang JN - 2007 research). A recent estimation also states that as many as ten thousand fatal crashes per year could be easily avoided if all vehicles were equipped with the ESC.

The Electronic Stability Control operates using sensors that intervene on the driver's behalf when he is about to lose control of the vehicle. The system contains anti-lock brakes that have speed sensors and an independent breaking potential that allows it to automatically brake wheels separately in order to keep the car on the road. For example, if a driver performs an emergency maneuver or makes a sudden turn, the ESC adjusts the brakes, throttle or tire suspension to help keep the vehicle under control. The system really comes in handy when driving on wet or icy roads and is extremely helpful to SUV drivers, as it has the potential to prevent 64% of the SUV rollovers, according to recent studies. One major benefit would be that it can also minimize the driver's stress when dealing with bad weather conditions. Another important thing is that, in order to integrate ESC, the car must have both ABS and TCS, being, in fact, an extension of the two and although it is created to be kept on all the time, some of the versions yet have an off switch that can be used when the ESC controls the car too often - in situations when the car gets stuck in mud or snow.

Since SUVs were top-heavy vehicles, they were at high risk for rolling over when suddenly steering, but based on a report from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, a driver of a 2009 model car is twice as probable to die in a rollover crash than someone driving a 2009 model SUV and with rollovers being less of a factor, SUVs currently have the lowest accident death rates and they can once again rely on their biggest selling advantage: their safety. However, the Electronic Stability Control is not perfect, most ESC's being unable to perform their functions if, for example, the car's speed is too high in order to apply the needed traction to the driver's intended maneuver or, in some cases, they can even malfunction - a problem in the system will normally illuminate a dashboard warning sign meaning traction control is disabled and, in some cases, the anti-lock braking system as well. Yet, whatever error they might have, that doesn't impact the driving itself, it just means that whoever's driving must be particularly careful on wet or icy pavements.

Miami Rollover Accident Statistics

Vehicles roll over in less than 3% of all crashes, and deaths can be prevented with electronic stability control and strong roofs. According to a national daytime observational survey of motorists, safety belt use was 8% among front seat occupants in 2013.

Unrestrained vehicle occupants are more likely than restrained occupants to be fatally injured in a crash, so belt use is much lower among fatally injured occupants. Although rare, rollover crashes are deadly: they account for more than a third of passenger vehicle occupant deaths. In 2013, 21,268 passenger vehicle occupants died in crashes of all kinds. Of those, 7,067 died in crashes where their vehicle rolled over.

Rollovers are much more common for SUVs and pickups than for cars. In 2013, 50% of SUV occupants killed in crashes were in vehicles that rolled over. In comparison, 45% of deaths in pickups and 24% of deaths in cars were in rollovers.

Types and Causes of Rollover Accidents in Miami

Contributing circumstances in these crashes include:

  • Excessive speed
  • Improper loading
  • Vehicle design
  • Defective tires
  • Negligent driver
  • Road conditions

What Documents Do I Need for a Rollover Claim in Miami?

If you or a loved one sustained severe personal injuries due to a rollover crash, you should contact our office as soon as possible. We require our clients to bring along all necessary documents including:

  • Contact details of the other driver and possible witnesses
  • Copy of the police report filed
  • Copy of your medical records
  • Documents attesting any previous repairs of the vehicle
  • Documents attesting the costs of damages sustained by the vehicle
  • Documents attesting when and from where you purchased the vehicle
  • Pictures from the scene of the accident
  • Your medical bills related to the crash

There is no need to worry in case you do not own all these documents: we can obtain most of them with your written agreement.

How Can Miami Lawyer Sean M. Cleary Help?

Proving liability in a rollover accident is usually a complicated process, especially if design or manufacturing defects are involved. For quality legal representation in rollover accident cases, contact Miami rollover accident attorney Sean M. Cleary.

In most cases, SUV rollover accidents are followed by grave injuries or even death. During a rollover accident, five main areas of the body can be usually affected: thorax, abdomen, upper and lower limbs, head and neck with the head and neck region being the most exposed area.

The most common of these injuries may include brain injury, spinal cord injury, cuts, scrapes, bruises or broken bones. If you or your loved one have been injured in an SUV rollover accident, contact The Law Offices of Sean M. Cleary today.

The Miami personal injury lawyer Sean M. Cleary will put all his efforts into ensuring you or your loved ones receive compensation for medical costs, past, and future lost wages, pain or suffering.

Many victims never get the recovery they deserve because they do not contact a personal injury lawyer. Do not let this happen to you. We will investigate the case, fight to get answers as to what happened, and if merited, file a personal injury or wrongful death claim. Families deserve answers and justice.

Disclaimer: Please note that the information provided on this site is not formal legal advice, also the site does not allow you to form an attorney-client relationship.