NHTSA: Nearly Half of SUVs with Tire Problems that are Involved in Accidents Roll Over

Rollover accidents are some of the least common accidents on American roads, and some of the most devastating. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), rollover accidents comprise three percent of the total vehicle crashes that occur across the country every year, but constitute as many as 31 percent of vehicle occupant fatalities, shedding light on how dangerous these accidents can be.

SUVs, Defective Tires, and Rollover Accidents

According to statistics from the NHTSA, about 45 percent of SUVs that have tire problems in the pre-crash phase (before the accident) and which are involved in accidents end up rolling over. So if your SUV’s tires are in poor shape, you may be at greater risk of a rollover.

Rollovers are some of the more devastating auto accidents because of the risk they carry for fatalities and severe injuries.  Passengers may be completely or partially ejected from the vehicle, increasing their risks of blunt force trauma and head injuries. In fact, ejections comprise 62 percent of fatalities in rollover accidents every year, according to the NHTSA. Head injuries are very common in rollover accidents because of roof crushes and collapses.

There are a number of factors that affect a vehicle’s risk of a rollover, including vehicle design, road conditions and the driver’s familiarity with a vehicle. However, tire problems are among the biggest contributing factors to rollover accidents.

Defectives Tires on SUVs

Defective tires and SUVs are a deadly combination. Several years ago, there were hundreds of fatalities linked to SUV rollover accidents involving Ford SUVs equipped with Firestone tires. Those fatalities occurred over a ten-year period and led to a massive recall.

The top-heavy nature of some SUVs may contribute to the risk of a rollover accident. Taller and narrower vehicles might be more prone to tip over if involved in an accident – the risk may increase when traveling at excessive speeds, making sudden and unsafe maneuvers, or driving on defective or underinflated tires.

Preventing SUV Rollovers

Tire safety is important for every motorist, whether they drive a large SUV or a small passenger vehicle. Check that the tires are properly inflated at the optimum pressure and that your SUV has the tires that are the correct size.

Check tire pressure at least once every week, and make sure that replacement tires are similar to the original set of tires. If you receive a recall notice or notice signs of defective tires, take your SUV to a qualified mechanic or tire professional for evaluation and possibly replacement of the tires.

Wear seatbelts when you drive, and make sure that other people in your vehicle are also buckled up, this may help you reduce the risk of ejection in the event of an accident. Drive at safe speeds, and be especially careful when you’re driving on rural roads that are poorly designed, and have higher speed limits. Try to avoid any sudden maneuvers as well.

Compensation after an SUV Rollover Related to Tire Problems

Survivors of rollover accidents can file a claim for compensation for damages that include the following. 

  • Medical expenses
  • Lost income
  • Diminished earning capacity
  • Pain and suffering
  • Disability

The liable party might be another driver in many cases, though if the SUV rollover was related to tire problems caused by defects in the tires, the tire manufacturer may be responsible for damages.

An attorney will help you identify liable parties and pursue fair compensation for the damages that you’ve suffered. Call 855-529-0269 to speak with a lawyer at Chalik and Chalik Law Offices, and discuss how you can begin filing a claim for compensation for your injuries.