Of the 6.3 million reported traffic collisions that occur annually, according to Statista, the majority of them do not end in any injuries. This is rarely true for a rollover. Rollovers are one of the most dangerous types of collisions to be involved in, and typically involve serious injuries or death. If you were injured in a rollover collision, an experienced Naples personal injury attorney can assist you in recovering compensation for your damages.
The Physics of a Rollover and Why Taller Vehicles are More Susceptible to These Types of Crashes
A rollover occurs when there is a strong enough change in a vehicle’s center of gravity, such as going around a corner too quickly—and that change in center of gravity persists and is strong enough so that the tires are unable to continue supporting the vehicle’s center of gravity. According to NASA, the vehicle “seeks a new structural support relative to the pull of gravity,” which may be the side of the car or the roof. If the change in center of gravity occurs fast enough, the vehicle will roll. Because SUVs, large passenger vans, and tall pickup trucks all have a high center of gravity to begin with, they are more susceptible to rolling when their center of gravity is displaced by going around a corner or swerving to avoid another vehicle that cuts in front of them. Vehicles that have a lot of weight up high, such as a cargo truck or semi-truck, are also prone to rolling over for this same reason—a high center of gravity to start out with. However, all vehicles can roll over, not just vans or SUVs.
Two Types of Rollover Collisions
There are two types of rollovers, according to Safercar.gov. The first, and by far the most predominant accounting for 95 percent of all rollovers, is called a “trip” rollover. This occurs when the vehicle leaves the road and the tires hit the soft shoulder, curb, or other object—including another vehicle—resulting in a rollover. A trip rollover can happen on a roadway as well. An “untripped” rollover is prone to the same physics, minus the tripping mechanism. During high speed emergency maneuvering, a driver may lose control of their vehicle and roll even if they never touch another car or fixed object on the road. This is more common with top heavy vehicles, and particularly with vehicles that are towing a trailer.
Common rollover injuries include:
- Traumatic brain injury;
- Spinal injuries;
- Back and neck injuries including fractures and herniated discs;
- Dislocated shoulder;
- Fractured collarbone;
- Fractured arm;
- Fractured hip;
- Other fractures in the leg, including the knee;
- Torn ACL tendon and meniscus;
- Fractured ribs; and
- Injuries to the face.
Proving Fault in a Rollover Collision
Sometimes rollovers happen so fast and are so traumatic that the injured victims do not recall how the crash even occurred. If you were knocked unconscious or suffered a traumatic brain injury, you will be even less likely to remember what happened. Even if you do have a clear recollection of the events leading up to the crash, it is often your word against the other driver. The other driver—more accurately their insurance company—will do everything in their power to deflect fault, and may even go out of their way to blame you or another party for causing the crash. As such, it is always critical to prove negligence on the other driver’s behalf. This involves using the official accident report, pouring through witness statements, and using other evidence at the scene of the crash such as skid marks and vehicle debris location. Proving fault is one of the first things that needs to happen in order to reach a successful settlement or lawsuit verdict. And, due to Florida’s comparative negligence laws, the more at fault any other party is, the more compensation you can receive. The degree of liability the victim has reduces their compensation by that amount. As such, if you were 10 percent liable and the other party was 90 percent liable, you can collect 90 percent of your damages. If the other driver was 100 percent liable, you can receive the full 100 percent of your damages.
Contact an Experienced Naples Rollover Collision Lawyer Today
Fair compensation starts with hiring an attorney. Do not discuss your case with the other party or their insurance company until you have spoken with your own lawyer first. To get started on filing a personal injury claim, call the Naples personal injury lawyers at The Law Offices of Marc L. Shapiro, P.A. today at 239-649-8050 to schedule a free consultation.