Car rollover accidents often mean substantial injury to the vehicle’s occupants. Rollover collisions frequently involve significant force. Collisions often throw anything in a vehicle around, which can cause further bruising and lacerations.
Do you deserve compensation after a rollover collision? It may depend on what led to the accident and your injuries.
Challenges Associated With Rollover Accidents
Rollover accidents cause some unique challenges for the victims involved in those accidents.
Rollover accidents may raise the risk of severe injury or death.
Rollover accidents often involve a great deal of force distributed over the entire vehicle. Everyone involved in a rollover collision usually faces that high degree of force.
Rollover accidents may cause a wide range of potential injuries, many of which can have life-threatening or long-term consequences for the victims.
- Whiplash, including long-term whiplash
- Back and neck injuries, which may linger for a long time after the accident without proper treatment
- Spinal cord injuries
- Head injuries, including traumatic brain injury and concussion
- Broken bones
- Severe lacerations from broken windshields or items flying around the vehicle during the accident
Any item not secured in the vehicle at the time of the accident usually goes flying in a rollover collision. Passengers not wearing a seatbelt may also suffer substantial injury. Furthermore, seatbelt errors can cause the seat belts to break under strain.
After a rollover collision, getting out of a vehicle may pose a significant injury risk. In some cases, victims may need to wait for help to arrive before getting out of the vehicle.
Rollover accidents usually result in substantial property damage.
In a rollover collision, the car’s entire surface usually takes severe damage. Modern vehicles have a cage that helps protect the vehicle’s occupants, preventing the vehicle from collapsing entirely. However, the vehicle’s structure may take considerable damage during the accident. Rollovers often lead to a totaled vehicle.
Vehicles that roll can end up in difficult-to-access locations.
Often, a rollover collision places a vehicle in a location where emergency responders may have a more challenging time getting to it and its passengers. The slowed response may delay needed medical care for the passengers in the vehicle. Furthermore, passengers who try to get out of their vehicles in dangerous areas may suffer additional injuries due to a lack of caution or difficult terrain.
What to Do After a Car Rollover Accident
After a rollover accident, you may have few or no options for moving your vehicle, especially if it lands on its side or top. However, you can take several steps to help keep yourself and any other passengers in the vehicle safer and improve your odds of later filing an injury claim to help you receive compensation for your injuries.
#1. Check for injury immediately.
Rollover collisions can cause serious lacerations and may leave a great deal of broken glass in the car, especially in cases where the windshield or windows shatter. Check for injury immediately. Stabilize yourself to the best of your ability, including bracing yourself against the vehicle floor if possible, and make sure that you do not have any immediate signs of serious injury.
If anyone in the vehicle shows signs of severe injury, particularly broken bones or head trauma, you may need to wait for assistance to arrive before moving them. Try to slow the flow of blood from any obvious lacerations.
#2. Call 911.
Calling 911 will summon both a police officer and medical attention to the accident scene. A 911 call can also summon needed help to safely get everyone out of the vehicle, including summoning the fire department to get into the vehicle. Let the dispatcher know your location, including that the car rolled in the accident and what position it landed in. If anyone suffered a serious injury, the dispatcher might talk you through providing some basic first aid while waiting for help to arrive.
#3. Assess your surroundings.
If you landed on the top or side of the vehicle after a rollover, you might want to exit the vehicle as soon as possible. Do not exit the vehicle if moving could worsen your injuries. You may also want to look at your surroundings and whether you can safely get out of the vehicle. Do not try to get out of the vehicle if you find yourself on unstable ground or if moving the vehicle could cause it to fall further.
Sometimes, getting out of a rolled vehicle may prove very difficult. The door may stick in cases where the accident interfered with the integrity of the car’s structure. You may need to remain in the vehicle and wait for help to arrive, even if you can safely get out of your seatbelt. By pressing your hands to the ceiling with one hand and stabilizing your feet, you can often release your seatbelt and change position, even if you cannot get out of the vehicle.
Keep in mind that many post-collision injuries occur when trying to get out of a vehicle after a rollover collision. You may need to carefully look around to check the presence of any broken blasts or other debris that could cause injury or to take a look at the terrain. You may also need to consider where to stand safely to avoid getting hit by traffic while waiting for help to arrive.
#4. Get medical care.
Following a rollover collision, you should receive an evaluation from a qualified medical professional to help rule out any potential injuries. A medical professional can determine whether you may have suffered a head injury or broken bones that you did not notice in the accident.
Getting care from a medical professional can also help your injury claim. When you receive medical care, it creates a record of the injuries you sustained and that the accident caused them, making it easier for you to put together an injury claim later.
Follow all instructions issued by medical professionals, from paramedics at the accident scene to doctors and nurses at the hospital. Closely following those instructions can help increase your odds of making a full recovery and may decrease the odds that the insurance company covering the liable driver or entity will try to hold you liable for worsening your injuries.
#5. Contact a lawyer for help with an injury claim.
The factors that caused or contributed to your rollover accident can significantly impact who you need to file a claim against and how much compensation you may deserve for your injuries.
Working with a lawyer can help give you a better idea of what parties may share liability for your accident, including whether the vehicle manufacturer might share liability for the injuries you sustained or the collision’s severity. In addition, a lawyer can make sure you understand your rights and your next steps after an accident, which can help you maximize the compensation you can recover.
If you suffered injuries in a rollover accident, you might need an attorney to help. Contact an attorney as soon as possible to ask any questions you have about your claim.