Preventing Fatalities in Rollover Accidents is Simple: Wear Your Seatbelt!
“According to a 2009 study by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, passengers of vehicles involved in automobile accidents are more than twice as likely to be killed when they are ejected from a motor vehicle during a crash. “
This same study showed that over 77 percent of passengers who were ejected from a vehicle during an automobile accident were killed as opposed to being injured. Automobile accidents involving vehicle rollovers were more likely to result in fatalities and the likelihood of an ejection was almost twice as high where the speed of the vehicles at the time of the accident is 60 miles per hour or greater.
So what can motorists and passenger do to prevent or reduce the chance of being ejected in a car accident – wear your seatbelt. For example, from 2003 to 2007, only 2 percent of restrained drivers were ejected during a crash while 35.3 percent of unrestrained occupants were thrown from the vehicle and most them died. At the Ferguson Law Group our trained rollover accident attorneys suggest the following steps to avoid being thrown from a vehicle during an accident:
- (a) Don’t speed – the faster you are going in a car the more likely you are to be in a rollover accidents
- (b) Make all passengers wear their seatbelts at all times, especially in larger vehicles like SUV’s or vans where it is easy to become comfortable on long trips
- (c) If small children become tired of sitting in a car seat, resist the urge to take them out and let them sit in the normal, adult seats. They are small and rely on you to make the right decision, even when they do not like it
- (d) Do not ride in the hatchback area of vehicles or in the open bed of pickup trucks, even where it allowed by law
- (e) Wear your seatbelt! It is that simple. The statistics and numbers from past car wrecks tell the whole truth and provide the guidance. If you do not wear your seatbelt, your chances of being killed double
Not wearing a seatbelt can also reduce or eliminate your ability to recover against a negligent at-fault driver. Even in States that prevent a jury from hearing that an injury victim was not wearing their seatbelt in an accident, in the experience of our car accident trial attorneys, the lack of a wearing seatbelt evidence somehow tends to get in front of the jury anyway as a practical matter or the jury simply infers it from the evidence. Not wearing a seatbelt is careless.
If a jury finds out that a person did not wear their seatbelt and were injured the likelihood of no recovery or a reduced recovery is grossly increased. Remember, however, that if you or a loved-one are injured in an automobile accident and were not wearing their seatbelt we may still be able to recover for personal injury or wrongful death.
Our rollover car wreck lawyers are available 24/7 free of charge to answer your questions about these cases.