Injured in Fort Lauderdale?
Every year more than 26,000 people are either seriously injured or killed in car rollover accidents. More than 10,000 people a year die in such accidents. Although automotive manufacturers say that the force of impact causing car occupants to dive toward the car roof accounts for many injuries and deaths in rollovers, many top transportation engineers believe that roof crush standards are not stringent enough and should be strengthened.
Injuries Common in Roof Crush Accidents
In car accidents involving crushed roofs, injuries typically occur to the brain, head, neck and shoulders. Common roof crush injuries include:
Clearly, rollovers involving a crushed roof can drastically alter the lives of those who survive such accidents. Some survivors are permanently disabled from their injuries.
Car Manufacturers’ Standards
Before 2009, car roofs had to withstand 1.5 times the car’s curb weight, as long as the curb weight didn’t exceed 5,000 pounds. New standards that are scheduled to be in place starting in September 2012 state that the roof must withstand three times the car’s curb weight, and there will no longer be a 5,000 limit.
Testing will apply pressure alternately to both sides of the car, more faithfully mimicking a rollover accident than earlier tests of car roofs. Convertibles and cars that have retractable hard tops will be exempt from the new roof standards. By 2017, all new cars (with the exceptions just noted) will have to be in compliance with the new standard.
Changes from New Automobile Roof Standards
According to news accounts by the Department of Transportation, the new standards should save 135 lives per year and should prevent 1,000 annual injuries. Stronger roof standards are expected to add about $54 to the overall cost of a new car, and the extra weight in the stronger roofs will add from $15 to $52 in fuel costs over a car’s life.
Fort Lauderdale Auto Defect Lawyers
If you’re injured in a rollover accident that results in a crushed roof, contact the Fort Lauderdale personal injury attorneys at Kelley/Uustal. We have experience helping consumers stand up for their rights when they have been injured in car accidents. We know which laws apply to these accidents and we are not afraid to stand up to insurance companies. Our specialized staff is available to supervise your case and use our resources to try to help you get the care and compensation you deserve.