NHTSA Study of Rollover Accidents Reveals Alarming SUV Crash Statistics

The NHTSA sponsored study by the National Center for Statistical Analysis about the characteristics of fatal rollover crashes revealed alarming data.

The objective of the study was to examine the characteristics of passenger vehicles and their drivers involved in fatal rollover crashes. It used data from 1991-2000, examining trends and statistics. It concluded the following alarming statistics:

  1. Nearly 3/4 of occupants killed in rollover crashers weren't wearing seat belts. Slightly less than 2/3 of them were completely ejected from the vehicle.
  2. Most fatal rollover crashes are single vehicle crashes.
  3. Positive and elevated blood alcohol counts are associated with fatal rollovers, and particularly fatal single vehicle rollovers.
  4. Rollover crashes are more likely to result in fatalities than other types of crashes.
  5. Rollover crashes are the cause of about 1/5 of all fatal crashes.
  6. The number of fatal passenger car rollover crashes has been decreasing in recent years.
  7. The number of fatal light truck rollover crashes is increasing, particularly among SUVs and vans.
  8. The number of fatal SUV rollovers has more than doubled since 1991, growing faster than any other class of light trucks.
  9. The increase in fatal light truck fatalities have been offsetting the decreases in both fatal passenger car crashes  and rollover crashes.
  10. Increases in fatal light truck rollovers may be a result of their growing proportion of the vehicle mix than their deterioration in the design and construction of the vehicles involved.
  11. Slightly less than 1/2 of single vehicle rollovers were reported by the investigating police officer to be preceded by an attempt to avoid the crash by a steering maneuver, compared with 1/3 of rollovers in multi-vehicle crashes.
  12. In about 40% of fatal single vehicle rollovers and about 57% of multi-vehicle rollovers, investigating officers reported that no crash avoidance maneuvers preceded the crash.
  13. Drivers of rollover vehicles tend to be males, under 40 years old, driving on two-way roads without dividing barriers.
  14. Speed was an important factor in fatal rollovers, with most crashes occurring on roads where speed limits were 55 miles an hour or greater.

To read the full report, click here.

If you have been injured in a rollover accident, or a loved one has been injured or killed in a rollover accident, you have options to recover for your losses. Please contact one of our experienced attorneys now to discuss your case: 877.724.7800 or fill out a contact form on our website.