How Common Are 18-Wheeler Overturns in Alabama?

rolled over truck after an accident

News reports of a semi-truck that rolled onto its side recently near Decatur raise the question of how common 18-wheeler overturns are in Alabama. This article will explore statistics on semi-truck rollover accidents, address the high rollover risk among such vehicles, and identify where large trucks overturn most frequently. It will also discuss how the rollover truck accident lawyers at Morris, King & Hodge, P.C., can help after an accident.

Alabama 18-Wheeler Rollover Statistics

In July 2022, a semi-truck overturned on Highway 20 westbound while heading into Decatur, causing major traffic delays, according to a local news report. While this accident resulted in only minor injuries, many rollover accident victims are not so lucky, as the following statistics demonstrate:

  • According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety  (IIHS), 50 percent of large truck occupant deaths occurred in rollover crashes in one recent year.
  • According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), overturn was the first harmful event in 160 fatal truck crashes, and the most harmful event in 270 fatal truck crashes in one recent year. In injury crashes, overturn was the first harmful event in 5,000 crashes and the most harmful event in 8,000 crashes.

Why Are Rollovers Common in Semi-Trucks?

According to the FMCSA, over 78 percent of rollover truck accidents involve driver error. An analysis of hundreds of large truck crashes by the FMCSA identified the following primary causes of truck rollover accidents:

  • Speed – Speed was the most significant contributor to rollover crashes, contributing to 45 percent of crashes.
  • Attention lapses – Truck drivers who were inattentive, fatigued, or distracted were a major cause of rollover accidents.
  • Control error – Control errors that contribute to rollover accidents include over-steering, improper braking, and failure to maintain a safe following distance.
  • Inadequate visual search – Drivers who fail to check for clear paths before turning at intersections or changing lanes increase their risk of causing a rollover accident.
  • Pre-operation – Examples of pre-operation causes of rollover truck accidents include improper loading of cargo and poor condition of the driver.
  • Other drivers – Other drivers caused a small proportion of rollover accidents in the analysis.
  • Vehicle truck components – Poor conditions of the tires, brakes, or other parts of the truck caused an even smaller proportion of rollover accidents in the analysis.

Where Do Trucks Overturn Most Frequently?

The FMCSA analysis also identified the following areas where truck overturns occur most often:

  • Curves – Curves are especially problematic when a large truck is speeding or a load is improperly secured.
  • On-ramps and off-ramps – Trucks struggle with ramps because of their higher center of gravity.
  • Divided highways – Fifty-six percent of rollover crashes occurred on divided highways.

Contact the Alabama Truck Accident Lawyers at Morris, King & Hodge, P.C.

If you were injured in a rollover truck accident in Alabama, truck driver error or negligence on the part of another party could be to blame. If so, you may be able to recover compensation for your injuries and other accident-related losses.

Contact the Alabama semi-truck rollover accident lawyers at the law firm of Morris, King & Hodge, P.C., for help pursuing the money you need during this difficult time.

Joe A. King, Jr., has been trying cases on behalf of injured plaintiffs or surviving families since 2000.