The United States has some massive vehicles rolling around its roadways. However, large vehicles don’t always mean semi trucks. While green initiatives calling for better fuel efficiency and more concern for the environment may be slimming the number of Suburbans and Escalades you see on the road, the SUV isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Many people justify purchasing a larger car with the fact that it provides greater safety for their family and themselves, but in reality, larger high-riding vehicles are no safer than smaller cars for their occupants, and they often pose a much greater danger to other drivers.
Contrary to popular conception, the accident fatality rate for SUV occupants is actually slightly higher than that of smaller vehicles. Far and away, rollover accidents are the most serious threat to SUV owners, claiming the lives of more than 10,000 individuals each year. Nearly 300,000 of these accidents are reported annually, and this is due primarily to the high center of gravity of many SUVs. Inexperienced drivers are more likely to flip their vehicles than experienced ones, but rollover accidents happen to anyone. According to federal research, 92% of rollovers are initiated by a vehicle being “tripped,” which can be the result of striking a curb, a road guard, or another lower riding vehicle near them. This can also occur when one side of an SUV passes over mud or gravel, as is the case with many soft road shoulders. (HowStuffWorks-Auto; The Detroit Project)
When SUV accidents do happen, the resulting injuries can be extremely severe. According to the Illinois Department of Transportation, in 2010, nearly 90,000 people were injured in Illinois car accidents, suffering injuries that ranged from minor broken bones to traumatic brain and neck damage. If you are injured in an SUV or truck accident, it is important to understand your legal rights, and our lawyers have a wealth of experience in this area. In one case example, our lawyers filed suit on behalf of a 23-year-old woman who suffered multiple debilitating leg fractures as the result of a serious accident. Our attorneys were able to secure a $2.07 million verdict for our client, ensuring that she would have her medical bills and insurance costs paid for, both now and in the future.