Even though vehicle rollovers are unlikely to occur in daily traffic, but it is definitely a dangerous scenario to be seen on the road. According to Safercar.gov, rollovers accounted for nearly 35% of all deaths from passenger vehicle crashes. Statistics from 2010 indicate that more than 7,600 people died in rollover crashes.
Therefore it is critical that drivers and motorists have to understand how to prevent getting involved in such an uneventful accident, at the same time know what to do should it occur.
So What Exactly is a Rollover Accident?
Rollover accidents are where drivers have lost control of their vehicles and they have overturned once or more. This results in having the vehicles on their side or overturned onto their roof which their wheels pointing upwards. As the rollovers can be very unpredictable, the drivers may be left unconscious by the possible impacts, some may even be thrown out of the driving seats.
Rollovers are violent and reasons could be complicated. Even though the type of vehicle has a significant role in such accident, there are other factors such as environmental conditions, traffic situations, drivers’ behavior, speed, and locations.
Chances of Survival
There are several ways to avoid such accidents from happening. Firstly, it concerns with the type of vehicle being driven. For instance, if you are driving SUVs, due to them having a higher center of gravity, these vehicles are prone to such incidents. One of the most common causes of fatalities in rollovers is that passengers or drivers are not wearing seat belts during a journey. So fastening your seat belts can increase the chances of survival.
One way to avoid having a flip over by driving around turns and corners is to drive slower than you would in straight ways. Watch out for the road conditions while driving. Your vehicle and tires should always be in balance condition. Another way to decrease the chance of an accident is not to consume alcohol or any drugs that may hamper your judgment when driving. Driving under influence accounts for more than 50 percent of fatalities which involved rollovers.
Strategies to Protect Yourself
Should you know a rollover is happening, you will have to prepare yourself for possible impacts. Put your feet away from the petals, because this can prevent your ankles from breaking. Put your arms over your chest, because you need to push your body as far into the seat as possible. Do not lean forward to the steering wheel. Try to stay calm until the vehicle stopped rolling.
Turn off the engines as soon as possible once the vehicle stops running. Depending on the circumstances, you need to find an exit strategy. When you are upside down, try to find a way to unfasten yourself and climb out through the door if you are not injured or physically able to do so. You can also choose to roll down or break the window if necessary. Beware of the shards and broken glasses during the process. When you are out of your vehicle, signal or seek assistance. However, if you are immobilized due to injuries, stay in your position to avoid aggravating the injuries.
The above are some advice on preventing rollover accidents and strategies to minimize injuries and damages. The best strategy above all is always to drive defensively and watching out for road conditions when driving.