A rollover crash early Sunday on the Hardy Toll Road in north Houston has left two people dead. In a statement, the Harris County Sheriff’s Office said that a white 1994 Mitsubishi Eclipse that was heading southbound on West Hardy Road at the 26900 block at 12:15 a.m. when the vehicle began to drift from the roadway. The driver of the Eclipse tried to correct and get the vehicle back to the roadway, however, lost control. In trying to correct, the car struck the end of a concrete culvert, which caused the vehicle to roll over. According to deputies, both the driver and the front seat passenger were ejected from the vehicle. Both died at the scene of the crash. Deputies said that a third occupant of the vehicle, a passenger in the back seat, was able to climb out of the vehicle after the crash. The passenger was transported to Memorial Hermann Hospital to be treated for injuries sustained. A rollover accident one of the most severe and terrifying kinds of accidents to have while driving. Many people have the idea that rollover accidents are mostly limited to vehicles such as SUV’s and other types of large vehicles with a high center of gravity. While it is true that SUV’s are more likely than other types of vehicles to roll over, any vehicle can potentially be involved in a rollover accident. It does not matter if you are driving an SUV, a tractor trailer, or a passenger vehicle a rollover accident is a complete loss of control of the vehicle and the potential for very serious injuries and even death. There are essentially two different types of rollover accidents. The first is called a tripped rollover. Tripped rollovers occur when something causes a vehicle to begin rolling. A prime example of this is when a vehicle goes off the road and the driver over-corrects or turns the steering wheel too hard in order to get back onto the roadway. The vehicle tires will dig into the softer ground, which will provide the tipping point for the vehicle to begin rolling. Other tipping points may include medians, guardrails, curbs or even other vehicles. The second kind of rollover accident is known as an untripped rollover. Untripped rollovers will usually occur when a vehicle is top heavy or has a higher center of gravity. SUV’s and some large pickup trucks have a higher center of gravity and are more prone to rollover accidents than regular passenger cars tend to be. As a safe driver, can help prevent rollover accidents by: Wearing seat belts – Seat belts serve a purpose of keeping safely in your seat so that you are not thrown about in an accident. Most states in the U.S. have laws that require the use of seat belts and child restraints. In spite of this, approximately half of all rollover fatalities occur when a person is either partially or completely ejected from the vehicle. Nearly three-quarters of the people who are ejected from a vehicle are killed, no matter what kind of accident it is. Checking Your Tire Pressure – Check your owner’s manual for the recommended tire pressure or PSI. Be certain that all the tires are properly inflated, have a decent amount of tread and are in overall good shape. Being sure not to Overload Your Vehicle – When a vehicle is overloaded, it decreases its overall stability. This is especially true in the case of SUV’s and pickup trucks where the center of gravity is higher. Placing heavy loads on the roof of a vehicle, via a cargo carrier, for example, also increases a vehicle’s center of gravity. Placing the heaviest cargo low on the floor, as far from the rear end and as close to the center of the vehicle as possible will decrease your chances of tipping because of a poorly distributed load. Paying Attention to your Rate of Speed – The faster the rate of speed a vehicle travels, the more it increases the chance of a rollover accident. Taking a turn or a curve too quickly can cause a deadly rollover accident. Avoiding Distracted Driving – Try not to use a cellphone, MP3 player, or GPS device while you are driving. If you must use any of these devices, it is best to safely pull off of the road and get back on again only after you have finished. It only takes three seconds for a vehicle travelling 55 miles per hour to travel the distance of a football field. Better yet, if you are travelling with someone, have them handle all electronic devices for you so that you focus on driving. Practicing Defensive Driving – You can never successfully predict all of the potential hazards of the road or what another driver may do behind the wheel. An animal such as a deer or a pet may dart in front of you, or another driver may approach you too fast from behind, turn into your path, or slam on their brakes unexpectedly. It pays to always be prepared for the unexpected when you get behind the wheel. Knowing Your Vehicle – Every vehicle has its strengths and its limitations. Every vehicle responds differently in terms of the road, how it handles, the stiffness of the brakes and clutch, even how quickly it accelerates or decelerates. Having all of these factors in mind while you are driving is a good way to help avoid accidents such as rollovers. If you or a loved one has been involved in a rollover accident, give our offices a call. Our attorneys have years of experience successfully representing clients in the Texas courts. Rollover accidents can be both expensive and tragic. Nearly always there are medical expenses, physical therapy to help survivors recover from temporary or even permanent injury, plus the loss of income. There are also expenses when faced with the tragic loss of loved ones. Funeral expenses and picking up the pieces in the aftermath is painful and time consuming. We will take the time to listen to the details of your accident. We will then outline what the next steps should be in proceeding with your case. Depending on the circumstances and the facts surrounding the accident are, you may be entitled to compensation. We are here to help you and your loved ones. Your initial consultation is free, confidential and without obligation.