During this difficult time, Boohoff Law will remain committed to the people of Florida & Washington. We are still available 7 days a week to injured victims who need our help, and we offer FREE PHONE CONSULTATIONS and Electronic Sign-Ups.

Head-On Collisions: Deadly and Direct Impacts

Personal Injury Attorney Tatiana Boohoff
Tatiana Boohoff, Auto Accident Attorney

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that more than one quarter of all traffic accidents across the nation are head-on collisions, the second most frequent type of traffic accident. Head-on collisions are among the most treacherous of all motor vehicle accidents, especially when vehicles are traveling at a high speed.

According to the NHTSA, head-on collisions occur more frequently in rural areas, but those in urban areas are not immune to the danger. Drivers who make careless or negligent decisions while driving or suffer a medical emergency behind the wheel put other motorists at risk for debilitating injuries and sometimes fatality.

When you take the time to learn about head-on collisions, you can avoid causing one or falling victim to one when you are out on the road. Below we provide in depth information about the causes of head-on collisions, potential injuries victims might suffer, and actions you can take if you lose a loved one in a head-on collision from the skilled car accident attorneys at Boohoff Law.

Driver Behaviors That Can Lead to Head-on Collisions

A variety of different scenarios might directly or indirectly lead to a dangerous head-on collision. Whether driver behaviors are purposeful or accidental, the following driver behaviors most often result in head-on motor vehicle collisions. Remember that determining liability and causation in motor vehicle accidents is one of the most challenging tasks for lawyers and investigators because multiple causes can exist. The following driver behaviors might occur individually or together, and might be only one link in the chain of events leading to a traffic accident.

  • Wrong-way turns. Drivers who go the wrong way on a one-way road or street can potentially cause a head-on collision, if they don’t realize their mistake before it’s too late. Speed limits are lower in Seattle city limits and nearby residential areas, so collisions might not be deadly or result in serious injuries. Entering the wrong exit or entrance ramp to a freeway or interstate is the most dangerous wrong-way turn because of the increased speed. Drivers who are fatigued, driving under the influence, or distracted because they are unfamiliar with the area put motorists at risk for injury in a head-on collision when they go the wrong way.
  • Crossing the centerline. Roads and highways without large center medians can be dangerous for drivers when other motorists swerve into oncoming traffic. Driving distractions, drunk driving, drugged driving, drowsy driving, or a medical emergency like a heart attack or stroke might cause a driver to swerve. Inclement weather creates poor visibility and slippery roads that can also contribute to a driver crossing over the centerline. Some drivers even swerve on purpose to avoid dangers on the road such as crossing animals, dead animals, trash, or load spillage, causing them to cross over the center line and possibly cause a head-on collision.
  • Speeding. Drivers who operate their vehicles above the posted speed limit or travel too fast for road, weather, or traffic conditions, risk losing control of their vehicle. Loss of vehicle control increases the chances of swerving into oncoming traffic and causing a head-on collision. Speeding over hills, on winding roads, or on narrow roads can also lead to a driver losing control of their vehicle and causing a head-on collision.
  • Passing improperly on two-lane roads. Reckless, aggressive, and impatient motorists might choose to pass the vehicle in front of them on a two-lane road. Safely passing a car on a two-lane road is legal as long as there isn’t a double yellow line, typically present on curves and hills. When negligent and careless drivers choose to pass on a double yellow line, they risk causing a deadly head-on collision. Additionally, drivers who legally pass on two-lane roads purposefully enter the “wrong” lane; if they don’t carefully scan for oncoming vehicles, they can also cause a head-on collision.

Head-on Collisions Lead to Severe Injuries

Being involved in a head-on collision can lead to a wide array of injuries depending on a person’s location in the vehicle during impact, the size and type of motor vehicles in the accident, and the speed at which impact occurs. Less severe collisions cause bodies to head towards the front of the car, but airbags and seatbelts can stop some of the movement.

At high speeds, the most severe, catastrophic, and sometimes fatal, injuries occur during a head-on collision. When drivers and passengers aren’t wearing seat belts, the likelihood of debilitating or deadly injuries exponentially increases. Injuries that victims of head-on collisions might experience include:

Painful Neck Injuries

Car accidents remain the most common cause of whiplash, which frequently occurs during head-on collisions. Whiplash is a soft tissue injury that happens when a person’s neck suddenly extends and flexes. The National Institute of Health reports that whiplash causes damage between the vertebrae in the neck, discs, muscles, ligaments, and nerves. Severe cases of whiplash might show symptoms shortly after a head-on collision, but many symptoms don’t show up for days or weeks. Some common signs of whiplash include:

  • Pain and stiffness in the neck
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Prickling, burning, or other abnormal sensations in the neck
  • Back and shoulder pain
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Memory loss
  • Irritability
  • Abnormal sleeping patterns
  • Fatigue and lethargy
  • Depression and anxiety

Many whiplash victims can wear a special brace for their neck and will likely heal completely within two or three months. Yet, in severe head-on collisions, accident victims might have to cope with residual headaches and chronic pain for life.

Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI)

Head-on collisions can lead to traumatic brain injuries; mild TBIs, typically referred to as concussions, often heal on their own after a few weeks. Moderate to severe TBIs can take months to heal and put victims at risk for lifelong struggles with residual headaches and other symptoms associated with brain damage.

A TBI can occur from blunt force trauma to the head—that is, an object directly comes in contact with the head and causes the brain to shift inside of the skull. In a head-on collision, a driver might hit his head on the steering wheel if the airbag fails or passengers who aren’t wearing seat belts might fly forward and hit their head on a seat or the windshield.

A driver or passenger, however, does not need to strike their head to suffer a TBI. The impact of collision causes a jolt, which is sometimes strong enough to move a person’s brain around in their head. The faster vehicles are traveling when a head-on collision occurs, the higher the likelihood occupants might suffer a TBI. Whether direct or indirect, a TBI can alter a victim’s life and is especially dangerous for teens and young children, whose brains don’t fully develop until they are in their 20s.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warn of the serious short-term and long-term effects of a traumatic brain injury. Effects fall into four different areas of brain function, including:

  • Struggles with remembering and logical reasoning
  • Loss of sensations or abnormal sensations that can damage vision, hearing, taste, touch, and balance
  • Difficulty with language functions such as communicating, expressing emotions and ideas, and understanding abstract ideas
  • Emotional challenges such as changes in personality, increased aggression, anger, anxiety, and depression

According to the CDC, a severe TBI might also lead to epilepsy and increased risk for neurological conditions such as Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s.

Back Injuries

The force of impact from a traffic accident causes occupant bodies to move around in multiple ways, sometimes in unnatural positions. This can result in severe and crippling back injuries. Back injuries vary but include broken vertebrae, bulged discs, and slipped discs. In many situations, back injury victims must undergo one or more corrective surgeries, which can require screws, plates, braces, and other devices. Yet, even after doctors to their best to fix a back injury and alleviate pain for accident injury victims, their patients might still have to cope with debilitating pain for the rest of their life.

Pain management is a large part of living with a back injury. Severe back injuries make it difficult for victims to find comfort in any position and doctors sometimes prescribe highly addictive opioid painkillers. Among those who suffer injuries in a head-on collision, those with back injuries have the highest likelihood of having to deal with addiction issues related to pain management.

Spinal Cord Injuries

In severe head-on collisions, drivers and passengers risk suffering a spinal cord injury. As if back injuries aren’t bad enough, back injuries that impact the spinal cord often have a more detrimental impact on a car accident injury victim. In most cases a spinal cord injury results in some loss of body function, but the severity of the injury and the location of the injury will determine the extent of the loss.

Minor injuries may heal on their own and victims have a good chance of regaining all loss of function; however, severe spinal cord injuries can result in permanent paralysis in affected areas. Spinal cord damage occurring closer to the brain impacts more of the body, and damage occurring further down the spinal column causes less loss of function. Those who suffer severe spinal cord injuries often must be confined to a wheelchair. The most severe spinal cord injuries result in tetraplegia, total loss of function below the neck.

Limb Crush/Amputation

Drivers and front-seat passengers involved in head-on collisions are especially at risk for limb crush and/or amputation if the front end of their vehicle crumples and completely collapses. The impact of a head-on collision might lead to legs, ankles, and feet getting pinned or crushed. Limb crush means a limb loses blood flow from the rest of the body, creating a potentially fatal issue. Doctors always do their best to revive a crushed limb and return blood flow, so victims can make a full recovery.

Yet, in some cases, doctors must amputate crushed limbs to save a person’s life. Amputation requires extensive recovery that can last for years and victims must learn how to cope with their loss, which sometimes includes learning how to use an artificial limb. Amputations also carry emotional trauma resulting in anger, aggression, humiliation, and embarrassment, requiring psychological counseling to help victims to work through their injury.

Internal Organ Injuries

The force of impact from a head-on collision can cause drivers and occupants to break one or more ribs, especially when the accident occurs at high speeds. Broken ribs cause pain, but they heal with rest and time. Broken ribs, however, can puncture organs and cause severe internal hemorrhaging and potentially fatal organ damage.

Those involved in a head-on collision might experience generalized pain and won’t be able to tell if they have an internal injury, making it imperative to let a doctor examine them as soon as possible. Failure to seek medical treatment can lead to death when an internal injury goes untreated. Infants and young children are especially at risk if harnesses on a car seat aren’t adjusted and secured appropriately.

When a Loved One Dies in a Head-On Collision

If you lose a loved one in a head-on collision, Washington law permits survivors to sue the at-fault driver and other potentially liable parties for compensation related to damages from death. This likely includes an insurance company, but might also include other parties. Depending on your relationship with the deceased, you might be able to receive compensation for medical costs up to the time of death, funeral costs, and burial costs.

Eligible surviving family members might also receive compensation for non-economic damages such as loss of support for dependents, loss of companionship for a spouse, the pain and suffering your loved one felt until death, and mental anguish as a result of your family member’s death.

With emotions running high for you and your family during this difficult time, an experienced auto accident lawyer can advise you on the best course of action for your wrongful death claim and who you should name in the suit while you focus on coping with your loss.

Phone: (877) 659-2417
2200 6th Avenue, Suite 768
Seattle, WA 98121

Car Accident Scenarios Who is at Fault

Personal Injury Attorney Tatiana Boohoff
Tatiana Boohoff, Auto Accident Attorney

After any car accident, one of the first questions asked is: Whose fault was it? We place importance on that question, in part, because our legal system uses fault (or something equivalent to it) as the measuring stick for who-pays-who for damages inflicted by the accident.

The answer to that question is not always straightforward. Opinions may differ as to who caused a particular accident. And there is never a single answer that is correct for every situation. Every accident has its own unique facts and circumstances, after all.

In this blog post, we take a look at a variety of car accident scenarios and explore who may bear fault for purposes of gauging legal liability. If you have questions about who was at fault in a car accident that injured you, contact an experienced car accident attorney.

Defining Fault

Before we dive into different types of car accidents, it helps to pause and consider what we mean by the word fault. In the context of car accident law, fault is shorthand for someone having acted, or failed to act, in such a way as to breach a duty of care to others, which caused the accident and/or injuries. A duty of care is an obligation we owe to each other has citizens not to act in a way that is reasonably likely to cause someone else harm.

When someone drives drunk or runs a red light, for example, that person violates a duty of care not to put others on the road in danger. If an accident happens and someone else gets hurt, we say the driver who violated a duty of care is at fault and should pay damages to the injured parties.

Lawyers look for a variety of at fault parties in any car accident scenario, focusing on who has fault not just for causing an accident, but also for the injuries that result from it. Sometimes, the party most able to pay damages has no fault for how the accident happened, but bears all of the fault for injuries. For example, an auto manufacturer may bear fault for injuries that defective safety features—such as faulty airbags—failed to prevent.

Fault in Various Car Accident Scenarios

So, who might have fault for a car accident? The simple, if not particularly satisfying, answer, is: it depends. The facts of each particular accident will determine who has fault for it. Without knowing specific details, no one can assign fault with any certainty.

But, we can make some generalized observations about fault in some typical car accident situations. Here are some examples.

Fault in Rear-End Accidents

Rear-end accidents are some of the most common accidents on American roads. They most commonly occur when the front end of one car collides with the tail end of a slower-moving or stopped car traveling in the same direction. Because of the particular mechanics of that sort of rear-end collision, we tend to assume fault lies with the driver of the trailing vehicle. After all, drivers have an obligation to operate at a speed that allows them to stop in time to avoid a collision with anything in front of them.

While the trailing driver is probably the most common at-fault party in a rear-end collision, he is not the only possible party with fault. First, the driver of the lead vehicle may have fault if, for example, she intentionally slammed her brakes to frighten the trailing driver or to induce a collision. (The lead driver could also have fault if the accident happened in reverse—that is, if she backed into the trailing driver.)

Parties other than drivers could also have fault for a rear-end collision. Take, for example, the manufacturer of the brakes on the trailing vehicle. If the brakes have a defect that causes them to fail when the driver steps on them, then the manufacturer could be at fault. Or suppose the road surface is especially slippery because a construction crew failed to clean up a load of sand. In that case the road contractor may have legal liability.

Fault in T-Bone Accidents

T-bone (or broadside or angular) collisions occur when the front end of one vehicle collides with the side of another. They occur most commonly at intersections and in other driving scenarios in which traffic crosses at right angles. They are some of the most deadly accidents on Washington roads, particularly for occupants of the vehicle hit on its side, who have little in the way of protection from a violent impact.

In a typical two-car T-bone collision, either driver, or both of them, could have fault. These accidents often happen when one or more driver ignores a stop sign or red light. They can also happen when one driver makes an aggressive decision, such as turning across a lane of oncoming traffic, that the other driver fails to anticipate or is driving too fast to avoid.

Like rear-end collisions, other parties could also share fault for a t-bone collision. A municipal government that designs a dangerous intersection or fails to maintain adequate or working traffic control signals could have fault for an accident, for example.

Fault in Head-On Collisions

Head-on collisions, as the name suggests, happen when two vehicles collide front-to-front, most often when one vehicle drifts or departs from its lane of travel into oncoming traffic. Though they are relatively rare as traffic accidents go, head-on collisions frequently result in catastrophic injuries and loss of life because of the violent forces involved.

Fault for head-on collisions typically falls to one of the two drivers, usually the driver whose car enters a travel lane heading in the wrong direction. This can happen when a driver dozes-off behind the wheel or drives drunk, and veers into an oncoming lane. It can also happen when a driver makes an ill-advised decision to pass someone on a two-lane road with one lane in each direction, and collides with a vehicle in the oncoming lane before returning to his travel lane. And sometimes it happens when a motorist drives the wrong way on a one-way street or on a closed highway. In all such circumstances, the driver whose car entered an opposing lane of traffic generally has fault for the accident.

But not always. There are circumstances where the car coming in the opposing direction should yield to the other car, such as when cars must yield to left-turning traffic at an intersection with a left-turn arrow. Head on collisions can also be the fault of auto manufacturers if, say, a vehicle defect makes a car difficult to control and causes it to veer into an oncoming travel lane.

Fault in Single-Car Accidents

Single-car accidents occur when a motorist loses control of a vehicle rolls over, drives off the road, or collides with a stationary object. On the surface, one might assume single-car accidents are always the fault of the driver. But that isn’t the case. Drivers in single-car accidents too-often blame themselves for a crash. In fact, as often as not, fault for single-car accidents lies elsewhere.

To begin, even without a collision there can still be another motorist who causes a single-car accident. Take, for example, the common scenario in which a car swerves and crashes into a tree or road barrier in reaction to erratic driving by a second vehicle that goes unharmed. In that case, the driver of the second vehicle has fault, even though he wasn’t technically involved in the accident.

Similar to other scenarios above, automotive manufacturers and municipal road contractors may also have fault for single car accidents if their actions create unsafe conditions leading to a crash. Another party who could have fault for a single-vehicle accident is a drug manufacturer, if it markets a medication with dangerous side-effects without warning about them, leading a driver to fall asleep or to become disoriented behind the wheel.

How Attorneys and Others Determine Fault for Car Accidents

As we said at the outset, fault forms the core of the inquiry into who has legal liability for a car accident and the damage it inflicts on innocent victims. Accordingly, lawyers, insurance adjusters, judges, and juries focus a significant amount of effort on determining fault in car accident cases.

Finding fault means investigating facts in detail. An attorney representing a client injured in a car accident will usually try to collect as much evidence as possible about the accident, and then (sometimes with the help of forensic experts) will piece that evidence together to form a picture of whose actions led to the collision or single-car accident. In performing this task, lawyers pursue the facts as far as they go until there is no longer a provable, reasonably foreseeable connection between someone’s actions and the accident and injuries.

Evidence pointing to fault in a car accident can come from a wide variety of sources, including eyewitness accounts, photographs and video of the accident scene, police reports, and forensic examinations of the vehicles involved. Anyone involved in an accident should, if possible, try and collect and preserve as much of this evidence as possible. These days, virtually everyone carries a smartphone they can use to snap pictures and take video at an accident scene. Shooting as many images of the accident scene as possible can make a large difference when it comes time for your lawyer to prove fault.

What Happens After an Attorney Identifies at Fault Parties?

After evaluating the evidence and deciding whose fault it points to, an attorney typically discusses a strategy with his or her client for recovering the compensation the client deserves. One common approach is to identify those at-fault parties with the ability to pay (either through insurance and/or their own assets) and to send them a demand letter asking for compensation. That typically opens a round of negotiations over a potential settlement of the injured person’s claim.

Most car accident matters get resolved through a negotiated settlement. But not all of them. Sometimes, a lawyer and her client must take a case all the way to trial to prove fault by showing a jury the evidence and asking them to award damages. A jury hears the evidence and decides whether the attorney has proved fault by a preponderance of the evidence (which basically means “more likely than not”). If so, then the jury decides the amount of damages to award to the accident victim.

Finding the Best Attorney for Proving Fault

Proving fault for a car accident is not always easy. It takes persistence in exploring the evidence, attention to detail, and a willingness to follow the facts wherever they lead. How do you know if your attorney has what it takes? Here are some tips for deciding on the best attorney for proving fault in your car accident case:

  • Choose an attorney with years of experience. Your life and livelihood are too important to trust to an attorney who has not spent her career fighting on behalf of victims of car accidents.
  • Pick a lawyer with a track record of success. There are no guarantees in car accident claims. But you can trust that an attorney who can point to significant successes on behalf of other clients knows what it takes to recover all the compensation you deserve.
  • Select a law firm with resources to pursue a case to the fullest extent necessary. Some firms can end up in over their heads on a case when it turns out there are more parties at fault than first anticipated. Choose a firm that has enough staffing and funds to prevent that from happening.

Remember, there is no single answer for who has fault for a car accident. An experienced Washington car accident lawyer can help evaluate who has fault for the accident that injured you. Contact a skilled car accident lawyer today to schedule a consultation and to learn more about who might have fault for your car accident.

Phone: (877) 659-2417
2200 6th Avenue, Suite 768
Seattle, WA 98121

All About Rollover Accidents

A woman was killed after being trapped under an SUV in a rollover crash. The Tuesday morning crash occurred at an intersection in South Seattle, and involved the SUV getting struck by another vehicle. The collision caused the SUV to roll, trapping the woman—who was a pedestrian near the scene—between the car and the pavement. Medics attempted to revive the woman, but she ultimately was declared dead at the scene. A witness to the accident said that, shortly before the collision, the traffic signals at the intersection had changed from normal to flashing red. Police were still working to determine the exact cause of the accident at the time the report was published.

If were injured in a rollover accident caused by another person’s carelessness or recklessness, you may be eligible to receive compensation for your injuries. An experienced car accident attorney can explain the process to you.

Rollover Accidents Explained

A rollover accident is one that involves a vehicle tipping over onto its side or rolling completely over until it is upside down. In some cases, the car may roll over multiple times before it comes to rest. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA), rollover accidents are relatively rare—accounting for only about 2 percent of all traffic crashes in the United States. However, they are a particularly deadly type of accident, accounting for nearly 35 percent of all traffic-related fatalities. Rollover accidents may involve a single vehicle, or they made involve multiple vehicles, and they result in the loss of more than 7,000 lives a year.

There are two types of rollover accidents:

  • Tripped rollovers, which account for 95 percent of single-car rollover accidents. A tripped rollover occurs when the vehicle leaves the roadway and something trips it to cause it to roll over. The trip may be soft soil that the tires dig into, or it may be something such as a curb, median, or guardrail.
  • Untripped rollovers are the more rare of the two types of rollovers, accounting for only about 5 percent. This type of rollover generally involves a top-heavy vehicle and a high-speed collision avoidance maneuver, such as swerving to avoid rear-ending a vehicle that turned onto the roadway without having an ample gap in traffic.

What Causes a Vehicle to Rollover?

Any vehicle is capable of rolling over if the circumstances are right, including:

  • The type of vehicle involved. Vehicles with a high center of gravity or those that are top-heavy are most likely to experience a rollover, particularly an untripped rollover involving speed and a collision avoidance maneuver or even a sharp curve in the road. Some of the common culprits in rollover accidents are SUVs, pickup trucks, vans, and commercial trucks.
  • Speeding, which makes it harder to control one’s vehicle and reduces the reaction time that one has between perceiving a hazard and coming to a safe stop. This reduced time to react can result in an over-correction or a sudden swerve that can cause the vehicle to roll. Speeding is a factor in approximately 40 percent of all rollover accidents. A Seattle rollover accident caused a car to virtually disintegrate and its driver to suffer severe injuries due to excessive speed. The driver suffered an apparent medical emergency before the crash, causing him to lose control of the vehicle.
  • Too much tire grip, which can lead to excessive sideways forces. This is particularly relevant for SUVs and pickup trucks outfitted with sporty aftermarket tires that provide more grip than the tires that the vehicle had on it when it was first purchased.
  • Not enough tire grip due to excessively worn tires. This can reduce the car’s ability to grip the road, resulting in skidding.
  • Where the accident occurs. Rollover accidents are more common on rural roadways in which there is only one lane per direction of travel and a higher posted speed limit. A 70-year-old man was killed in a rollover crash on State Route 162 after he failed to negotiate a curve. His vehicle rolled over into a ditch and was discovered partially submerged in the water.
  • Overloading the vehicle, which places strain on the tires, makes the vehicle harder to maneuver, and can cause top-heavy vehicles to tip over if the load is unbalanced or shifts during transport.
  • Alcohol. Nearly half of all rollover crashes involve an impaired driver. Alcohol impairment reduces many of the skills needed for the safe operation of a motor vehicle, including speed control and the ability to perceive and respond to hazards on the roadway. A woman suspected of driving under the influence of alcohol abandoned her vehicle after a rollover accident, leaving behind her injured twin sister in the wreckage. The rollover occurred when the vehicle that the woman was driving allegedly left the roadway for an unknown reason.
  • Curved roads or exit ramps, in combination with excessive speed and a top-heavy vehicle, can greatly increase one’s risk of being involved in a rollover crash.
  • An accident in which one vehicle serves as a “trip” to another vehicle, resulting in a rollover. A hotel shuttle bus near SeaTac Airport rolled over after allegedly being struck head on by a passenger vehicle that had crossed the median into oncoming traffic. One person died and several more were injured.
  • Fatigue, which can cause a driver to drift off of the road, increasing the chance that the vehicle will roll over.
  • Icy or wet roads. A charter bus full of University of Washington band members lost control on an ice-covered stretch of Interstate 90 and rolled over on its side. The crash resulted in injuries to nearly 40 people 120 miles southeast of Seattle.

Injuries Associated With Rollover Accidents

Rollovers are particularly violent accidents that often result in serious or catastrophic injuries. The severity of the injuries one suffers often depends on whether or not the vehicle’s occupants were wearing their seat belts at the time of the collision, as failure to do so places one at risk of being ejected from the vehicle. Some of the injuries often suffered by the victims of rollover accidents include:

  • Traumatic brain injuries, either from being ejected from the vehicle or from striking one’s head on an object inside of the vehicle as it is rolling over. Traumatic brain injuries can be life-altering, producing deficits such as an inability to walk, communicate, or recall events. Many individuals suffering this type of injury require round-the-clock care as they are no longer able to accomplish routine daily tasks on their own.
  • Spinal cord injuries, which can be life-threatening and may result in full or partial paralysis of the limbs or even tetraplegia, which is the loss of sensation and function in all of the limbs, the torso, and the pelvis.
  • Broken bones, often caused by ejection, striking the body against objects within the vehicle as it is rolling, or even getting limbs crushed beneath the vehicle.
  • Internal damage, such as punctured lungs resulting from broken ribs, or other damaged organs due to the force of the collision or from striking external objects after being ejected from the vehicle.

How to Avoid a Rollover Accident

While it is impossible to control the actions of other drivers that may result in an accident, there are some things you can do to avoid a rollover, or to survive it if you experience one:

  • Always wear a seat belt, even if you’re only going for a short drive. Seat belts allow you to remain inside the vehicle during the accident, which is typically your best opportunity to avoid serious injury or even death due to being ejected. According to the NHTSA, nearly half of all the people killed in traffic-related crashes in the United States in one recent year weren’t wearing their seat belts. Seat belt use reduces your risk of death by up to 45 percent.
  • When shopping for a vehicle, look for a newer car that has the benefit of improved safety equipment, including electronic stability control and side curtain airbags.
  • Also look for a vehicle that is lower to the ground. Remember that vehicles with a higher center of gravity and a narrow base—such as SUVs, pickup trucks, or vans—have a higher risk of rolling over as well.
  • Check the pressure on your tires. Under-inflated tires tend to run hotter than properly inflated tires, increasing the chance of a blowout that will make maneuvering your car very difficult. Over-inflated tires, while providing some degree of additional stability for the vehicle, are prone to severe damage by potholes and other irregularities in the road which could lead to loss of vehicle control.
  • Watch your speed. The faster you’re going, the less time you have to respond appropriately to hazards in the roadway and the harder it is to maintain control of your vehicle.
  • Don’t consume alcohol if you’re going to be driving, as impairment substantially increases your risk of any type of motor vehicle accident. By the same token, don’t drive if you’re overly tired. Fatigue produces similar symptoms as alcohol impairment in that it impacts your response time and your ability to control your speed.
  • Be cautious when traveling on rural roadways that feature a lot of curves, few options for overtaking other vehicles, and a higher posted speed limit. Be alert for other drivers who may also be traveling the same roadway while not exercising the same measure of caution.
  • Slow down for curves in the road. One of the primary causes of rollover accidents is loss of vehicle control due to excessive speed.
  • Be aware of the conditions of the road. Wet roads reduce the traction that your vehicle’s tires can provide, sometimes resulting in a sideways skid that can be a precursor to a rollover.
  • Allow enough space between your car and others on the roadway that you can stop for hazards without taking collision avoidance maneuvers that increase your risk of a rollover.

If You Were Injured in a Rollover, a Car Accident Lawyer Might Help You

If you were injured in a rollover accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence, you may seek compensation by filing a third-party insurance claim with the liable party’s insurance carrier or via a personal injury lawsuit. Washington residents generally have up to three years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit. A car accident attorney can explain each of these options to you and help with your case, including:

  • Personal Injury Attorney Tatiana Boohoff
    Tatiana Boohoff, Auto Accident Attorney

    Estimating the value of damages involved in your case based on the severity of the injuries you’ve suffered, the medical expenses you’ve incurred, and the impacts that your injury has had on your life and will have in the future.

  • Examining the facts of your case to determine all sources of liability and all potential insurance resources that could be used to compensate you.
  • Aggressively negotiating with the insurance company in an attempt to get you the highest settlement possible.
  • Providing extensive knowledge of the legal process and your case so that you can make the most informed decision possible regarding accepting a proposed settlement or pursuing a lawsuit.
  • Consulting with your doctors and other medical experts to provide an insurance company, a judge, or a jury with a valid glimpse as to your injuries and your prognosis.
  • Representing you in court, including a timely filing of your lawsuit, adherence to all requirements involved in filing your claim, attendance at all pre-trial conferences and hearings, the presentation of your case, assistance in collecting any award you receive, and representation in an appeal, should one be filed.

Speaking with a skilled auto accident attorney can answer any other questions you may have regarding your car accident case but to learn more we also recommend reviewing some car accident statistics and FAQs.

Boohoff Law
Phone: (877) 659-2417
2200 6th Avenue, Suite 768
Seattle, WA 98121