Philadelphia Rollover Accident Lawyer
If you drive an SUV, truck, or minivan, you should be aware of the risk posed by rollover accidents; they’re the most dangerous and common accidents for these types of vehicles, with an average of more than 280,000 occurrences every year and more than 10,000 fatalities. Rollovers have a higher incidence of fatality than other kinds of vehicle accidents, accounting for 33% of all passenger fatalities.
Even when a rollover doesn’t result in a fatality, it can cause physical injury and emotional distress, as well as damage to or total loss of your vehicle. If you or a loved one has experienced a rollover accident, you may have legal recourse to help cover medical bills, loss of property, and other expenses. Contact the Philadelphia personal injury lawyers at Ciccarelli law offices for a consultation about your rights.
Why Choose Ciccarelli Law Offices for Help With Your Case?
At Ciccarelli Law Offices, we understand the challenges vehicle accident victims regularly face in Philadelphia, and we are here to step in and help.
- Our team has the resources needed to handle every aspect of a rollover accident claim on your behalf.
- We believe in a client-focused approach, so you will always have a contact person available to answer any questions or concerns you have as your case moves forward.
- We never hesitate to take a case to trial if that is what is necessary to help clients recover the compensation they need to make a full recovery.
Common Causes of Rollover Accidents
Although they’re most common in taller, narrower vehicles, a rollover can occur to almost any vehicle under the right conditions. Rollovers occur when the wheelbase of a vehicle isn’t wide enough for the vehicle to complete a turn without tipping over. Sometimes an object striking a vehicle’s tire compounds a sharp or sudden turn. Vehicles with higher centers of gravity are therefore more likely to tip on a turn, as the center of gravity more easily overbalances the wheelbase.
According to safercar.gov, 90% of fatal rollover accidents occur while drivers are executing normal driving procedures – navigating a curve or driving on a straight road. Road conditions are an important factor, as rural roads are significantly more likely to be the site of a rollover. Weather conditions, such as ice or rain, and construction zones with shifting traffic patterns, are also likely causes.
Rollovers are either tripped or un-tripped, meaning that an object or soil catches a vehicle’s tires, causing it to roll. Triggers for tripped rollovers include:
- Guard rails or curbs
- Soft soil
- A steep slope
Un-tripped rollovers are less common but still possible. They are most common in vehicles that are very top heavy and are often the result of the driver turning the wheel abruptly to avoid a collision with a vehicle or an object in the road.
Consequences of a Rollover Accident
Due to the severe nature of a rollover accident, the consequences range from injury and emotional distress to death. The severity of injuries sustained in a rollover depends on several factors. Speed of the vehicle and precise circumstances of how the vehicle turned over, as well as whether the vehicle collided with any other object are all factors. One of the most important factors is whether vehicle occupants were wearing safety belts; wearing a seatbelt significantly increases the odds of surviving a rollover.
Rollover incidents are likely to lead to more severe injuries than one would typically expect from a vehicle accident. Regardless of whether or not a driver and passengers are restrained properly in the vehicle, a rollover incident places tremendous force on the human body, and the vehicle may sustain multiple impacts that affect those inside. Some of the most common types of injuries associated with Philadelphia rollover accidents include:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries with paralysis
- Crush injuries or amputations
- Internal bleeding
- Organ damage
- Major lacerations or puncture wounds
- Burn injuries
- Facial injuries
- Scarring and disfigurement
Importantly, but often overlooked, are the less visible emotional and psychological injuries associated with these incidents. Victims may experience long-lasting feelings of fear, anxiety, and stress, and even symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
What To Do After A Rollover Accident
There are various steps individuals should take after a rollover accident occurs, and these steps are designed to help not only ensure the well-being of the accident victim but also ensure the integrity of the overall injury claim against another party.
- Seek prompt medical care. Rollover accident victims must seek prompt medical treatment. Even if the injuries do not seem severe right away, rollover accidents often lead to significant delayed injuries that affect victims in the hours and days after the incident. Immediate medical treatment is the only way to establish a solid timeline between the incident and the injuries that do occur.
- Report the incident. Law enforcement officials need to come to the scene of the accident to investigate the incident and fill out the accident report. Police officers will often issue citations to at-fault drivers, and they may include their determination of fault in the accident narrative.
- Gather evidence. Rollover accident victims may be able to gather evidence at the scene of the incident, but please understand this may not always be possible. Some types of evidence that can be helpful are photographs taken on cell phones of the entire incident scene, as well as video surveillance from nearby cameras. Contact information for any eyewitnesses should also be obtained if possible.
- Contact an attorney. A rollover accident attorney in Philadelphia should get involved quickly so they can take over every aspect of the case. This includes opening communication with insurance carriers and other parties involved.
- Continue medical treatment. Rollover accident victims should continue any medical treatment recommended by their healthcare professionals. Any early discontinuation of care against medical advice could result in a claim delay or denial from the insurance carrier, and it could signal to the at-fault party that your injuries are not as severe as initially stated.
How To Prevent Rollover Accidents
You cannot control the other drivers around you, but you can control your own actions on the roadway. Preventing rollover accidents involves relying heavily on defensive driving techniques. The best ways to prevent rollover accidents in and around the Philadelphia area include:
- Driving the speed limit (or the appropriate speed for conditions)
- Keeping tires properly inflated
- Ensuring tires have adequate thread
- Avoiding driving distractions
- Continually watching surrounding vehicles while driving
- Leaving adequate distance between your vehicle and any vehicles in front of you
- Avoiding making a vehicle top-heavy
- Remaining cautious when there is inclement weather
- Slowing down a sufficient amount for any sharp turns
One major cause of rollover accidents is overcorrection, often including a person overcorrecting after they go off the shoulder of the road. Overcorrections could lead to an increased chance of rollovers because of the different terrain the tires may be on. For example, if a car drifts off the side of the road, two tires often end up on grass or gravel while two other tires are on the roadway. This difference in traction, along with the overcorrection, could lead to a major rollover.
Compensation Available for a Successful Rollover Accident Claim
At Ciccarelli Law Offices, we understand how important it is for rollover accident victims to recover compensation for their losses. We work diligently to obtain both “special” and “general” damages on behalf of every client we assist.
- Special damages. These are often referred to as economic damages, and they revolve around the calculable expenses that a rollover accident victim will likely incur. We say calculable because we can examine invoices, receipts, and bills that the victim receives after the incident occurs or the total amounts a person is expected to spend over the long term. Some of the most common economic damages associated with a rollover accident include:
- Any emergency medical expenses
- All follow-up hospital or doctor costs
- Coverage of medications and medical devices
- Assistance with household chores and duties
- Lost wages if a victim is unable to work while they recover
- Property damage expenses
- General damages. These are often referred to as non-economic damages, but they revolve around less calculable losses a rollover accident victim will likely endure. These damages are not as easily calculable because there are no direct receipts or bills to be added up to help measure a victim’s pain and suffering. Some of the most common types of recoverable non-economic damages include:
- Physical pain and suffering
- Emotional and psychological pain and suffering
- Loss of quality of life
- Loss of consortium with a spouse or partner
Contact A Philadelphia Rollover Accident Attorney Today
The experienced Philadelphia accident lawyers at Ciccarelli Law Offices can guide you on the best course of action for claims to cover medical bills, lost wages, or damage to property.