What causes rollover truck accidents?

Truck rollovers are a major danger on the highways today. We rely on semi-trucks to transport all manner of goods, some of them hazardous. Crude oil, gasoline and flammable gases are just some of the dangerous items that can be on board. Can you imagine the harm that can be done if a truck rolls over with one of these products in its cargo tank? To prevent injury and death to those drivers who happen to be in the way when this occurs, it is important to know what is true about rollovers and what is false.

There are three main myths that are prevalent today. The first one is that poor driving conditions cause rollovers. You might believe that cargo tank rollovers would happen at night or in poor weather. This is not true. Less than four percent of rollovers are caused by roadway and environmental reasons. Fifty-six percent occur on straight roads.

The next belief is that speeding and careless driving is a major factor in rollovers. The truth is that less than half of rollovers are caused by speeding trucks. Only 28 percent of all cargo accidents occur because of speeding.

The final myth that is believed is that inexperienced drivers are the reason. Not true; 66 percent of rollovers involve drivers who have more than 10 years of experience. Many rollovers happen to drivers who are between the ages of 25 and 55.

The real reason for rollovers that cause injury and death to cars and people is driver error. 78 percent of all rollovers involved driver error. 90 percent of the time, the rollover is not the first time it has happened to the driver involved.

Knowing how to drive when you are on the road with trucks hauling dangerous chemicals is important. If you have been injured in a truck accident you know how long it can take to recover.

Source: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, "Cargo Tank Rollover," accessed Sep. 23, 2015

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