Rollover Truck Accident Lawyers in Houston
Rollover Truck Accident Lawyers in Houston
Rollover truck accidents are a daunting reality in Houston due to the heavy flow of commercial vehicles. From massive 18-wheelers to local delivery trucks, the repercussions of these accidents can be particularly devastating.
Sadly, rollovers frequently result in a higher fatality rate than other road mishaps. If you or a loved one find themselves in the aftermath of such a traumatic event in Houston, understanding the dynamics, causes, and potential injuries of these accidents matters when seeking recovery damages. This article will help your recovery process and empower you to seek the justice and compensation you rightfully deserve.
What Is a Rollover Accident?
When a vehicle tilts to its side or turns upside down, it’s termed a rollover. When trucks are involved in such incidents, the magnitude of damage and risk heightens. During these accidents, the massive size and weight of trucks can cause subsequent collisions, potentially forcing other vehicles into similar rollover positions as well.
The dynamics of a rollover can be catastrophic, especially during peak travel times when highways are congested or when smaller vehicles are in close proximity. The immediate aftermath of such an event can lead to extensive traffic jams, with roads blocked for hours. This can readily disrupt the flow and schedules of countless commuters. Beyond the visible chaos, the unseen injuries, some life-threatening, demand urgent medical attention.
The physical damage to vehicles involved is often extensive, requiring significant repairs or total replacements. But the emotional and psychological impact can linger on long after the debris is cleared. The harrowing experience of being involved in or witnessing such a crash can lead to trauma. Especially in cases where trucks collide with compact cars, vans, or SUVs, these smaller vehicles’ occupants are vulnerable. As a result, they face a considerably higher risk of grave consequences.
What Causes Truck Rollovers?
Truck rollovers stand as some of the most harrowing accidents on the road. They can often lead to significant damage, injury, or even death. Several factors, from driver behavior to environmental conditions, contribute to these alarming incidents. As massive as they are, trucks possess a high center of gravity, making them more susceptible to tilting and rolling. It’s crucial to understand these causes not just for legal reasons but also for fostering a safer driving environment for everyone.
Speeding and Reckless Driving
While trucks are designed to transport heavy loads over long distances, they aren’t built for high speeds. Speeding can compromise a truck’s stability, especially during sudden turns or stops. Additionally, reckless driving, such as tailgating or weaving between lanes, can escalate the risk of a rollover due to the truck’s significant size and weight.
Uneven or Poorly Maintained Road Surfaces
Uneven roads, potholes, or other imperfections can destabilize a truck, especially if encountered at higher speeds. When a truck’s tire hits an inconsistency on the road, the force can tip the vehicle, potentially leading to a rollover. This is especially true if the driver overcorrects in response.
Improperly Loaded or Overloaded Cargo
Cargo balance is crucial in preventing truck rollovers. If a truck’s cargo is unevenly distributed or exceeds its weight limit, it can offset the vehicle’s center of gravity. This imbalance makes the truck more prone to tipping, especially during turns or sudden maneuvers.
Sudden Maneuvers and Sharp Turns
Due to their elongated structure and weight, trucks require more time and space to make safe maneuvers. A sudden lane change or sharp turn can cause the truck to tilt. This tilt can progress into a full rollover depending on certain conditions or speeds.
Adverse Weather Conditions
Rain, snow, ice, and even strong winds can greatly impact a truck’s stability. Slippery roads reduce traction, making it harder for the truck to maintain its course, especially during turns. Meanwhile, strong gusts can push against the broad side of trailers, increasing the risk of a tilt or rollover.
Mechanical Failures or Malfunctions
Trucks require regular maintenance to ensure all parts function correctly. A brake failure, steering mechanism malfunction, or suspension issue can all contribute to a rollover. If a critical system fails at a crucial moment, such as during a turn or while braking, it can lead to catastrophic results.
Driver Fatigue and Distraction
Long hours on the road can wear down even the most seasoned truck drivers. Fatigue can slow reaction times and impair judgment. Similarly, distractions like texting, adjusting the radio, or eating can divert a driver’s attention from the road. This can lead to late or incorrect maneuvers that increase the risk of a rollover.
What are Common Rollover Truck Accident Injuries?
Rollover truck accidents, given their violent nature and the sheer size and weight of the trucks involved, often lead to severe injuries for all parties involved. While truck drivers themselves are at risk, occupants of smaller vehicles often bear the brunt of the impact of such collisions. These accidents can lead to a range of injuries, some of which may have life-altering consequences. Here are some common rollover truck accident injuries that may occur:
Traumatic Brain Injuries
Traumatic brain injuries (TIBIs) are among the most severe outcomes of rollover truck accidents. Even with the protective structure of a vehicle and the use of safety belts, the violent motions and impacts involved can cause the brain to move inside the skull, leading to bruising, swelling, or even bleeding. The effects of a TBI can range from mild concussions with short-term symptoms to severe injuries that result in long-term cognitive impairment, behavioral changes, and physical disabilities.
Spinal Cord Injuries and Paralysis
The immense force exerted in a rollover accident can lead to injuries to the spine. Damage to the spinal cord can result in partial or complete paralysis, depending on the injury’s location and severity. Victims might face lifelong mobility challenges, requiring continued medical care, rehabilitation, and adjustments to daily life.
The sheer force of a rollover truck accident can lead to bone fractures and breaks. From simple fractures that heal with time to complex ones that require surgeries and extended physical therapy, bone injuries can severely impact an individual’s quality of life.
Internal Organ Damage
In rollover accidents, the abrupt motions and impacts can cause damage to internal organs. This might include the lungs, liver, kidneys, or spleen. Internal bleeding or organ rupture can be life-threatening and requires immediate medical attention.
Lacerations and Abrasions
During rollover, broken glass, metal shards, and other debris can lead to deep cuts or scrapes. Apart from the immediate danger of significant blood loss, there’s also the risk of infections or complications if not treated promptly and appropriately.
Given the heavy weight of trucks, rollover accidents can lead to situations where individuals are trapped inside their vehicles. Such scenarios can result in crush injuries, where significant pressure causes damage to body parts. These injuries can be extremely painful and might lead to complications like compartment syndrome or long-term disabilities.
Neck and Whiplash Injuries
The sudden movements in a rollover can cause the neck to snap back and forth, leading to whiplash. This injury primarily affects the neck’s soft tissues, leading to pain, stiffness, and a reduced range of motion. It might also result in nerve damage or other long-term complications in severe cases.
If you find yourself injured in a truck rollover, there are critical steps you should take to safeguard both your well-being and legal rights. Immediately seek medical attention, as timely medical intervention is vital for your health and for documenting the extent of your injuries. Always call the police to ensure an official record of the incident is made.
While dealing with the aftermath, it’s crucial to notify your insurance company about the accident but be mindful of sharing detailed accounts without legal counsel. Throughout the recovery process, maintain records of all medical treatments, related expenses, and missed workdays. These records can be instrumental if you pursue compensation.
Lastly, consulting with an experienced Houston truck accident attorney can offer invaluable guidance. This can help protect your rights and maximize your potential for fair compensation.
How Can Johnson Garcia Help?
In the aftermath of a rollover truck accident, having an experienced team on your side can make all the difference. For more than 35 years, Johnson Garcia has built a reputation in Houston for relentless advocacy and a deep commitment to our clients.
If you or a loved one has been impacted by such an accident, don’t navigate this challenging journey alone. Reach out to Johnson Garcia for dedicated and knowledgeable support. Call us at 832-844-6700 or contact us online to schedule a consultation.