Tractor-Trailer Rollovers Are A Serious Risk to Drivers

A truck driver remains hospitalized after his tractor-trailer rolled over on U.S. Highway 271 South in Arthur City, Texas on Tuesday morning. The trucker lost control of the big-rig and hit a utility pole before swerving back onto the highway and rolling over. He was airlifted to a Dallas hospital with serious injuries.

Another truck driver was seriously injured when he rolled his big-rig just after midnight on Thursday morning in San Antonio. The driver lost control of his 18-wheeler as he rounded a sharp curve on I-35 near I-10 and flipped the truck over the side of the highway.

And these are just a few of those in one week in Texas!

This type of scenario is all too common. Almost daily, semi rollover crashes occur on roadways throughout the country, often resulting in serious injuries to the driver and sometimes to motorists.


Hundreds of Truck Drivers Die Every Year

The Claims Journal reports that rollovers accounted for only 3.3 percent of all tractor-trailer wrecks, but were responsible for more than 50 percent of tractor occupants’ fatalities in 2012. Approximately 300 truck drivers are killed and 3,000 are injured every year in in rollover accidents.

The author of the article partially blamed outdated roads, including curves created 40 years ago. Yet, renovating roadways made under outdated designs would cost billions of dollars, making the repairs unlikely despite making the roads safer for truckers.

Causes of Rollover Accidents

The Association for the Advancement of Automotive Medicine (AAAM) published a study in which researchers analyzed causes of semi rollover wrecks. The AAAM researchers based their findings upon facts found in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s “The Large Truck Crash Causation Study.” The AAAM concluded that these factors contributed to the 239 large trucks rollover crashes in 2008:

  • Most big-rig rollovers occurred on curves, typically on off and on ramps.
  • Truck drivers often failed to adjust speed to accommodate the vehicle’s high center of gravity while taking curves.
  • 25 percent of rollover accidents occurred because truck drivers failed to adjust speed to accommodate the load’s weight and height.
  • Distractions, inattention and sleeping often led to a sudden correction that subsequently resulted in a rollover.
  • Drivers involved in rollovers typically turned too sharply, undercompensated for the turn or overcorrected an error.

The AAM recommends that commercial driver license programs employ videos to demonstrate common situations that lead to rollover accidents. In addition, the organization recommends use of simulations that allow drivers to obtain first-hand experience of rollover-inducing errors in a safe classroom setting.

Berenson Law Firm Helps Injured Truck Drivers Recover

Bill Berenson represents drivers injured in 18 wheeler accidents. Drawing upon 35 years of experience, our personal injury lawyer understands the complex matters involved in winning rollover cases. Call our firm at 888-801-8585 for a free consultation in our Dallas-Fort Worth office.

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