Ford Explorer Rollovers & Defects
The Ford Explorer was first introduced in 1992 as an updated model of Ford’s Bronco II, an SUV with some of the worst safety reports on record. In fact, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety named the Ford Bronco II the most deadly SUV on the road. The launch of the Explorer was a chance for Ford to re-market this SUV without the stigma attached to the Bronco II, but unfortunately, many of the safety problems that plagued the Bronco II were also present in the Ford Explorer.
Namely, stability problems in the Explorer presented a danger to motorists. Even though initial testing indicated that the vehicle needed to be widened, Ford instead chose cheaper alternatives to this overhaul, only adjusting the vehicle’s suspension and tire pressure before releasing it to the public.
Ford Explorer Rollover Accidents
Unfortunately, vehicle instability is a huge contributor to rollover accidents. When a roadway danger presents itself, most drivers will either attempt to swerve to avoid the danger or brake hard. This can compromise the stability in any vehicle, but in vehicles that are not designed properly, the chances of a rollover accident occurring increase dramatically.
Emergency maneuvers like swerving or braking can cause a vehicle to shift sideways, which they are not designed to do. As a result, the sidewalls will begin to fold under the tire when the car or SUV starts to shift sideways. This can often result in de-beading, and the tire eventually separating from the rim completely. When this happens, the tire will lose all air, and the wheel rims will drop and begin to dig into the ground. At this point, the vehicle is in an extremely precarious position, where the momentum of the vehicle itself will continue sideways in the direction of the now-tipping vehicle, resulting in the vehicle rolling over one or more times.
While, in theory, any vehicle could experience this type of accident, SUVs in particular are prone to rollover accidents because of their problems with stability in many models. As was seen in the case of the Ford Bronco II and the Ford Explorer, a narrow track width and a shorter wheel base created a center of gravity that was dangerously high, making even standard maneuvering behind the wheel dangerous enough to initiate a rollover accident. Sadly, even vehicles equipped with the latest in safety features may not be able to protect motorists in the event of a rollover accident. Specifically, frontal airbags are not designed to go off in a rollover accident, providing no protection to those in the vehicle, and seat belts frequently fail to keep motorists in their seats due to the extreme forces present in these types of accidents.
Contact a Ford Explorer Rollover Accident Lawyer
The devastation that can occur in a rollover accident is unimaginable. The forces exerted on those inside the vehicle can result in permanent, if not fatal, injuries. If you were involved in a rollover accident that you believe was caused or made worse by an unsafe vehicle design, our experienced team of lawyers, experts and engineers are ready to help you evaluate every aspect of your case and find out if another party was ultimately responsible for your needless suffering. If a Ford Explorer Rollover Lawsuit needs filing we are prepared to take on Ford Motor Company on your behalf.
Contact the Ford Explorer rollover lawyers at the Willis Law Firm today by calling 1-800-883-9858 and let us get started investigating your case.