Getting into an auto collision is one of the most frightening experiences one can go through in their lifetime. Fatalities, injuries, property loss, lost wages from time out of work to recover and the added inconveniences of the events that follow the crash are enough to cause real hardship in one’s life. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), rollover crashes account for only 2% of vehicle accidents. There were more than 7,600 rollover crash related fatalities in 2016 alone. You may be surprised to find that this means nearly 35% of all traffic related fatalities are caused by rollover crashes. You can’t always avoid getting into a vehicle accident but knowing what to do if you’re ever faced with this nightmare will increase your chances of safely exiting the vehicle and avoiding further damage to your automobile. Citywide Towing Service is here today with some helpful tips to keep you safe during and after a rollover accident.
What Are the Most Common Causes of Vehicle Rollover Accidents?
Type of vehicle– The type of vehicle you drive is one of those factors. Though any vehicle is at risk of a rollover, the most common seen in this type of crash are SUV’s passenger vans and certain trucks. Newer model SUV’s have been built to have better traction and stability, so they are at a much lower risk than earlier model SUV’s. Taller vehicles, or those that have an uneven weight distribution are at the highest risk of rollover crashes.
Speed– According to the NHTSA, the majority of fatal rollover accidents occurred in 55 MPH zones or higher.
Overcorrecting– This is a common issue in many different types of automobile accidents. If one’s vehicle loses control or when one’s tires come in contact with soft soil or snow, the vehicle may begin to swerve. A natural reaction for some is to overcorrect the vehicle which can lead to a rollover.
Alcohol– This is perhaps the most easily avoidable circumstance. DON’T DRINK AND DRIVE! Nearly half of all rollover crashes site alcohol as a factor in the crash.
What to Do in a Car Rollover Accident
Wearing your seat belt at all times when you’re in your vehicle is the greatest chance of survival one has during a rollover crash. Rollovers are eight times more likely to result in ejecting a victim from the vehicle than any other type of crash. Not only will your seat belt keep you in your seat, it can limit the amount of damage done to your body. Your seat belt and air bags are designed to keep you safe in the event of a rollover crash. It’s hard to think straight after impact but try your best to stay calm. If you panic, your body tenses which can cause further injury. Following are some more tips:
Let go of the steering wheel and brace yourself– Most people will grip the steering wheel to brace for impact, this is a mistake. Let go of the steering wheel and try to cross your arms across your chest. Let the airbags do their job. Holding on to the steering wheel can cause further injuries from the force of the impact. Do not bend over!
Turn off engine– Once the vehicle has come to a stop. Turn the engine off if at all possible. An upside-down engine is a recipe for disaster, fuel leaks and combustion can have catastrophic consequences.
Stabilize yourself and unbuckle– If you were wearing your seat belt, you will likely be hanging upside down. Check yourself for injuries, if you are okay then use your arm to brace yourself against the roof, use your legs to hold onto the seat and unbuckle your seat belt. If you are injured, then wait for help if possible.
Create an escape– If your doors won’t open, you can either use a window punch tool or your headrests to break a window so you can escape. Simply remove your headrest and use the metal poles to break the window. Before exiting the vehicle, check for traffic. Never crawl out until you’ve determined it’s safe to do so. Once out of the vehicle, stay back off the roadway, call for help and wait for emergency personnel.
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Once you’ve called emergency services, wait for them to arrive to receive assistance. Once everything is safe, you will need to call a tow company to retrieve your vehicle. We hope you never find yourself in this unfortunate circumstance, but if you do, Citywide Towing Service will be there quickly to assist you in removing your vehicle in your time of need.