By Pendergast Law on April 25, 2013
Large passenger vans are commonly used during the spring and summer by athletic teams, church groups, and daycare centers to transport groups to various activities. In preparation for the busy summer travel season, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has issued a warning reminding motorists and passengers about the rollover danger posed by these types of vans.
According to NHTSA, 15-passenger vans must be loaded carefully because overloading these vehicles can greatly increase the likelihood of a rollover accident. Too much weight in the vehicle can make it more difficult to maneuver and prone to veering out of control. Loading too much in the front or on one side can also affect the handling of the vehicles.
Improperly inflated tires can cause or contribute to a van rollover accident. A recent NHTSA study found that about 30 percent of vans involved in rollover accidents have at least one significantly under-inflated tire. If you are part of an organization that uses 15-passenger vans, it is absolutely vital that you check the tires before each trip.
Inexperienced drivers are also commonly involved in 15-passenger rollover accidents. NHTSA recommends that drivers with a commercial license operate these vehicles because they are usually trickier to handle. It is also crucial that occupants of these vans wear their seat belts at all times. NHTSA points out that 80 percent of fatally injured van occupants in rollovers in the past five years were unrestrained by seat belts.
Passengers who are victims of passenger van rollovers would be well advised to call the law offices of Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. Please contact us at 888-539-9211 to obtain more information about pursuing your legal rights.